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An Account op Egypt 5 

by herodotus 
translated by g. c. macaulay 

Tacitus on Germany 95 

translated by thomas gordon 

Sir Francis Drake Revived 133 

edited by philip nichols 

Sm Francis Drake's Famous Voyage Round the World 207 
by francis pretty 

Drake's Great Armada 237 

BY captain Walter biggs 

Sir Humphrey Gilbert's Voyage to Newfoundland . 271 


The Discovery op Guiana * . 321 

by sir walter raleigh 

HC— Vol 33 il) 


Herodotus xvas horn at Halicarnassus, on the southwest coast 
of Asia Minor, toward the end of the fifth century, B. C. Of his 
life we know almost nothing, except that he spent much of it 
traveling, to collect the material for his writings, and that he 
finally settled down at Thurii, in southern Italy, where his great 
work was composed. He died in 424 B. C. 

The subject of the history of Herodotus is the struggle between 
the Greeks and the barbarians, which he brings down to the battle 
of Mycale in 4^9 B. C. The work, as we have it, is divided into 
nine books, named after the nine Muses, but this division is prob- 
ably due to the Alexandrine grammarians. His information he 
gathered mainly from oral sources, as he traveled through Asia 
Minor, down into Egypt, round the Black Sea, and into various 
parts of Greece and the neighboring countries. The chronological 
narrative halts from time to time to give opportunity for descrip- 
tions of the country, the people, and their customs and previous 
history; and the political account is constantly varied by rare 
tales and wonders. 

Among these descriptions of countries the most fascinating to 
the modern, as it was to the ancient, reader is his account of the 
marvels of the land of Egypt. From the priests at Memphis, 
Heliopolis, and the Egyptian Thebes he learned what he reports 
of the size of the country, the wonders of the Nile, the cere- 
monies of their religion, the sacredness of their animals. He 
tells also of tlie strange ways of the crocodile and of that mar- 
velous bird, the Phenix; of dress and funerals and embalming ; 
of the eating of lotos and papyrus; of the pyramids and the 
great labyrinth; of their kings and queens and courtesans. 

Yet Herodotus is not a mere teller of strange tales. However 
credulous he may appear to a modern judgment, he takes care 
to keep separate what he knows by his own observation from 
what he has merely inferred and from what he has been told. He is 
candid about acknowledging ignorance, and when versions differ 
he gives both. Thus the modern scientific historian, with other 
means of corroboration, can sometimes learn from Herodotus 
more than Herodotus himself knew. 

There is abundant evidence, too, that Herodotus had a Phlr 



losophy of history. The unity which marks his work is due not 
only to the strong Greek national feeling running through it, the 
feeling that rises to a height in such passages as the descriptions 
of the battles of Marathon, Thermopylce, and Salamis, but also 
to his profound belief in Fate and in Nemesis. To his belief in 
Fate is due the frequent quoting of oracles and their fulfilment, 
the frequent references to things foreordained by Providence. 
The working of Nemesis he finds in the disasters that befall men 
and nations whose towering prosperity awakens the jealousy of 
the gods. The final overthrow of the Persians, which forms his 
main theme, is only one specially conspicuous example of the 
operation of this force from which human life can never free 

But, above all, he is the father of story-tellers. "Herodotus 
is such simple and delightful reading," says Jevons; "he is so 
unaffected and entertaining, his story flows so naturally and with 
such ease that we have a difficulty in bearing in mind that, over 
and above the hard writing which goes to make easy reading, 
there is a perpetual marvel in the work of Herodotus. It is the 
first artistic work in prose that Greek literature produced. This 
prose work, which for pure literary merit no subsequent work 
has surpassed, than which later generations, after using the pen 
for centuries, have produced no prose more easy or more read- 
able, this was the first of histories and of literary prose." 


By Herodotus 



WHEN Cyrus had brought his life to an end, Cam- 
byses received the royal power in succession, being 
the son of Cyrus and of Cassandane the daughter 
of Pharnaspes, for whose death, which came about before 
his own, Cyrus had made great mourning himself and also 
had proclaimed to all those over whom he bore rule that 
they should make mourning for her: Cambyses, I say, being 
the son of this woman and of Cyrus, regarded the lonians 
and Aiolians as slaves inherited from his father ; and he pro- 
ceeded to march an army against Egypt, taking with him as 
helpers not only the other nations of which he was ruler, 
but also those of the Hellenes over whom he had power 

Now the Egyptians, before the time when Psammetichos 
became king over them, were wont to suppose that they had 
come into being first of all men ; but since the time when 
Psammetichos having become king desired to know what 
men had come into being first, they suppose that the Phryg- 
ians came into being before themselves, but they themselves 
before all other men. Now Psammetichos, when he was not 
able by inquiry to find out any means of knowing who had 
come into being first of all men, contrived a device of the 
following kind: — Taking two new-bom children belonging 
to persons of the common sort he gave them to a shepherd 
to bring up at the place where his flocks were, with a 
manner of bringing up such as I shall say, charging him 



namely that no man should utter any word in their presence, 
and that they should be placed by themselves in a room where 
none might come, and at the proper time he should bring 
to them she-goats, and when he had satisfied them with milk 
he should do for them whatever else was needed. These 
things Psammetichos did and gave him this charge wishing 
to hear what word the children would let break forth firsts 
after they had ceased from wailings without sense. And 
accordingly so it came to pass ; for after a space of two 
years had gone by, during which the shepherd went on 
acting so, at length, when he opened the door and entered, 
both the children fell before him in entreaty and uttered 
the word hekos, stretching forth their hands. At first when 
he heard this the shepherd kept silence ; but since this word 
was often repeated, as he visited them constantly and at- 
tended to them, at last he declared the matter to his master, 
and at his command he brought the children before his face. 
Then Psammetichos having himself also heard it, began to 
inquire what nation of men named anything bekos, and in- 
quiring he found that the Phrygians had this name for 
bread. In this manner and guided by an indication such as 
this, the Egyptians were brought to allow that the Phrygians 
were a more ancient people than themselves. That so it 
came to pass I heard from the priests of that Hephaistos 
who dwells at Memphis; but the Hellenes relate, besides 
many other idle tales, that Psammetichos cut out the tongues 
of certain women and then caused the children to live with 
these women. 

With regard then to the rearing of the children they re- 
lated so much as I have said: and I heard also other things 
at Memphis when I had speech with the priests of Hephais- 
tos. Moreover I visited both Thebes and HeliopoHs for this 
very cause, namely because I wished to know whether the 
priests at these places would agree in their accounts with 
those at Memphis; for the men of HeliopoHs are said to 
be the most learned in records of the Egyptians. Those of 
their narrations which I heard with regard to the gods I 
am not earnest to relate in full, but I shall name them only, 
because I consider that all men are equally ignorant of 
these matters: and whatever things of them I may record, 


I shall record only because I am compelled by the course 
of the story. But as to those matters which concern men, 
the priests agreed with one another in saying that the 
Egyptians were the first of all men on earth to find out 
the course of the year, having divided the seasons into 
twelve parts to make up the whole; and this they said they 
found out from the stars : and they reckon to this extent 
more wisely than the Hellenes, as it seems to me, inasmuch 
as the Hellenes throw in an intercalated month every other 
year, to make the seasons right, whereas the Egyptians, 
reckoning the twelve months at thirty days each, bring in 
also every year five days beyond the number, and thus the 
circle of their seasons is completed and comes round to 
the same point whence it set out. They said moreover that 
the Egyptians were the first who brought into use appella- 
tions for the twelve gods and the Hellenes took up the use 
from them ; and that they were the first who assigned altars 
and images and temples to the gods, and Avho engraved fig- 
ures on stones; and with regard to the greater number of 
these things they showed me by actual facts that they had 
happened so. They said also that the first man who became 
king of Egypt was Min ; and that in his time all Egypt ex- 
cept the district of Thebes was a swamp, and none of the 
regions were then above water which now lie below the lake 
of Moiris, to Λvhich lake it is a voyage of seven days up the 
river from the sea : and I thought that they said well about 
the land; for it is manifest in truth even to a person who 
has not heard it beforehand but has only seen, at least if 
he have understanding, that the Eg}φt to which the Hellenes 
come in ships is a land which has been won by the Egyptians 
as an addition, and that it is a gift of the river: moreover 
the regions which lie above this lake also for a distance of 
three days' sail, about which they did not go on to say any- 
thing of this kind, are nevertheless another instance of the 
same thing: for the nature of the land of Egypt is as fol- 
lows : — First when you are still approaching it in a ship and 
are distant a day's run from the land, if you let down a 
sounding-line you will bring up mud and you will find your- 
self in eleven fathoms. This then so far shows that there 
is a silting forward of the land. Then secondly, as to Egypt 


itself, the extent of it along the sea is sixty schoines, accord- 
ing to our definition of Egypt as extending from the Gulf 
of Plinthine to the Serbonian lake, along which stretches 
Mount Casion ; from this lake then the sixty schoines are 
reckoned : for those of men who are poor in land have their 
country measured by fathoms, those who are less poor by 
furlongs, those who have much land by parasangs, and those 
who have land in very great abundance by schoines: novi 
the parasang is equal to thirty furlongs, and each schoine, 
which is an Egyptian measure, is equal to sixty furlongs. 
So there would be an extent of three thousand six hundred 
furlongs for the coast-land of Egypt. From thence and as 
far as Heliopolis inland Egypt is broad, and the land is all 
flat and without springs of water and formed of mud: and 
the road as one goes inland from the sea to Heliopohs is 
about the same in length as that which leads from the altar 
of the twelve gods at Athens to Pisa and the temple of 
Olympian Zeus : reckoning up you would find the difference 
very small by which these roads fail of being equal in 
length, not more indeed than fifteen furlongs; for the road 
from Athens to Pisa wants fifteen furlongs of being fifteen 
hundred, while the road to Heliopolis from the sea reaches 
that number completely. From Heliopolis however, as you 
go up, Egypt is narrow; for on the one side a mountain- 
range belonging to Arabia stretches along by the side of it, 
going in a direction from the North towards the midday 
and the South Wind, tending upwards without a break to 
that which is called the Erythraian Sea, in which range 
are the stone-quarries which were used in cutting stone 
for the pyramids at Memphis. On this side then the moun- 
tain ends where I have said, and then takes a turn back; 
and where it is widest, as I was informed, it is a journey of 
two months across from East to West; and the borders of 
it which turn towards the East are said to produce frank- 
incense. Such then is the nature of this mountain-range; 
and on the side of Egypt towards Libya another range 
extends, rocky and enveloped in sand: in this are the pyra- 
mids, and it runs in the same direction as those parts of the 
Arabian mountains which go towards the midday. So then, 
I say, from Heliopolis the land has no longer a great extent 


so far as it belongs to Eg}φt, and for about four days' sail 
up the river Egypt properly so called is narrow : and the 
space between the mountain-ranges which have been men- 
tioned is plain-land, but where it is narrowest it did not 
seem to me to exceed two hundred furlongs from the Ara- 
bian mountains to those which are called the Libyan. After 
this again Egypt is broad. Such is the nature of this land: 
and from Heliopolis to Thebes is a voyage up the river of 
nine days, and the distance of the journey in furlongs is 
four thousand eight hundred and sixty, the number of 
schoines being eighty-one. If these measures of Egypt in 
furlongs be put together, the result is as follows: — I have 
already before this shown that the distance along the sea 
amounts to three thousand six hundred furlongs, and I will 
now declare what the distance is inland from the sea to 
Thebes, namely six thousand one hundred and twenty fur- 
longs : and again the distance from Thebes to the city called 
Elephantine is one thousand eight hundred furlongs. 

Of this land then, concerning which I have spoken, it 
seemed to myself also, according as the priests said, that the 
greater part had been won as an addition by the Egyptians ; 
for it was evident to me that the space between the afore- 
said mountain-ranges, which lie above the city of Memphis, 
once was a gulf of the sea, like the regions about Ilion and 
Teuthrania and Ephesos and the plain of the Maiander, if 
it be permitted to compare small things with great; and 
small these are in comparison, for of the rivers which 
heaped up the soil in those regions none is worthy to be 
compared in volume with a single one of the mouths cf the 
Nile, which has five mouths. Moreover there are other 
rivers also, not in size at all equal to the Nile, which have 
performed great feats ; of which I can mention the names 
of several, and especially the Acheloos, which flowing 
through Acamania and so issuing out into the sea has al- 
ready made half of the Echinades from islands into main- 
land. Now there is in the land of Arabia, not far from 
Egypt, a gulf of the sea running in from that which is 
called the Erythraian Sea, very long and narrow, as I 
am about to tell. With respect to the length of the voyage 
along it, one who set out from the innermost point to sail 


out through it into the open sea, would spend forty days 
upon the voyage, using oars; and with respect to breadth, 
where the gulf is broadest it is half a day's sail across: and 
there is in it an ebb and flow of tide every day. Just such 
another gulf I suppose that Egypt was, and that the one ran 
in towards Ethiopia from the Northern Sea, and the other, 
the Arabian, of which I am about to speak, tended from the 
South towards Syria, the gulfs boring in so as almost to 
meet at their extreme points, and passing by one another 
with but a small space left between. If then the stream of 
the Nile should turn aside into this Arabian gulf, what would 
hinder that gulf from being filled up with silt as the river 
continued to flow, at all events within a period of twenty 
thousand years? indeed for my part I am of opinion that it 
would be filled up even within ten thousand years. How, 
then, in all the time that has elapsed before I came into 
being should not a gulf be filled up even of much greater 
size than this by a river so great and so active ? As regards 
Egypt then, I both believe those who say that things are so, 
and for myself also I am strongly of opinion that they are 
so; because I have observed that Eg>'pt runs out into the 
sea further than the adjoining land, and that shells are 
found upon the mountains of it, and an efflorescence of salt 
forms upon the surface, so that even the pyramids are being 
eaten away by it, and moreover that of all the mountains of 
'Egypt, the range which lies above Memphis is the only one 
which has sand : besides which I notice that Egypt resembles 
neither the land of Arabia, which borders upon it, nor 
Libya, nor yet Syria (for they are Syrians who dwell in 
the parts of Arabia lying along the sea), but that it has soil 
which is black and easily breaks up, seeing that it is in 
truth mud and silt brought down from Ethiopia by the 
river: but the soil of Libya, we know, is reddish in colour 
and rather sandy, while that of Arabia and Syria is some- 
what clayey and rocky. The priests also gave me a strong 
proof concerning this land as follows, namely that in the 
reign of king Moiris, whenever the river reached a height 
of at least eight cubits it watered Egypt below Memphis; 
and not yet nine hundred years had gone by since the death 
of Moiris, when I heard these things from the priests : now 


however, unless the river rises to sixteen cubits, or fifteen 
at the least, it does not go over the land. I think too that 
those Egyptians who dwell below the lake of Moiris and 
especially in that region which is called the Delta, if that 
land continues to grow in height according to this propor- 
tion and to increase similarly in extent, will suffer for all 
remaining time, from the Nile not overflowing their land, 
that same thing which they themselves said that the Hel- 
lenes would at some time suffer : for hearing that the whole 
land of the Hellenes has rain and is not watered by rivers 
as theirs is, they said that the Hellenes would at some time 
be disappointed of a great hope and Avould suffer the ills 
of famine. This saying means that if the god shall not 
send them rain, but shall allow drought to prevail for a long 
time, the Hellenes will be destroyed by hunger; for they 
have in fact no other supply of water to save them except 
from Zeus alone. This has been rightly said by the Egyp- 
tians with reference to the Hellenes: but now let me tell 
how matters are with the Egyptians themselves in their turn. 
H, in accordance with what I before said, their land below 
Memphis (for this is that which is increasing) shall con- 
tinue to increase in height according to the same proportion 
as in the past time, assuredly those Egyptians who dwell 
here will suffer famine, if their land shall not have rain 
nor the river be able to go over their fields. It is certain 
however that now they gather in fruit from the earth with 
less labour than any other men and also with less than the 
other Egyptians; for they have no labour in breaking up 
furrows with a plough nor in hoeing nor in any other of 
those labours which other men have about a crop ; but when 
the river has come up of itself and watered their fields and 
after watering has left them again, then each man sows 
his own field and turns into it swine, and when he has 
trodden the seed into the ground by means of the swine, 
after that he waits for the harvest, and when he has 
threshed the corn by means of the swine, then he gath- 
ers it in. 

Η we desire to follow the opinions of the lonians as re- 
gards Egypt, who say that the Delta alone is Egypt, reckon- 
ing its sea-coast to be from the watch-tower called of Pet^ 


seus to the fish-curing houses of Pelusion, a distance of forty 
schoines, and counting it to extend inland as far as the city 
of Kercasoros, where the Nile divides and runs to Pelusion 
and Canobos, while as for the rest of Egypt, they assign it 
partly to Libya and partly to Arabia, — if, I say, we should 
follow this account, we should thereby declare that in for- 
mer times the Egyptians had no land to live in; for, as we 
have seen, their Delta at any rate is alluvial, and has ap- 
peared (so to speak) lately, as the Egyptians themselves say 
and as my opinion is. If then at the first there was no land 
for them to live in, why did they waste their labour to prove 
that they had come into being before all other men? They 
needed not to have made trial of the children to see what 
language they would first utter. However I am not of 
opinion that the Egyptians came into being at the same 
time as that which is called by the lonians the Delta, but 
that they existed always ever since the human race came 
into being, and that as their land advanced forwards, many 
of them were left in their first abodes and many came down 
gradually to the lower parts. At least it is certain that in 
old times Thebes had the name of Egypt, and of this the 
circumference measures six thousand one hundred and 
twenty furlongs. 

If then we judge aright of these matters, the opinion of 
the lonians about Egypt is not sound: but if the judgment 
of the lonians is right, I declare that neither the Hellenes 
nor the lonians themselves know how to reckon since they 
say that the whole earth is made up of three divisions, 
Europe, Asia, and Libya: for they ought to count in addi- 
tion to these the Delta of Egypt, since it belongs neither to 
Asia nor to Libya; for at least it cannot be the river Nile 
by this reckoning which divides Asia from Libya, but the 
Nile is cleft at the point of this Delta so as to flow round 
it, and the result is that this land would come between Asia 
and Libya. 

We dismiss then the opinion of the lonians, and express 
a judgment of our own on this matter also, that Egypt is 
all that land which is inhabited by Egyptians, just as Kilikia 
is that which is inhabited by Kilikians and Assyria that 
which is inhabited by Assyrians, and we know of no boun- 


dary properly speaking between Asia and Libya except the 
borders of Egypt. If however we shall adopt the opinion 
which is commonly held by the Hellenes, we shall suppose 
that the whole of Egypt, beginning from the Cataract and 
the city of Elephantine, is divided into two parts and that 
it thus partakes of both the names, since one side will thus 
belong to Libya and the other to Asia; for the Nile from 
the Cataract onwards flows to the sea cutting Egypt through 
in the midst; and as far as the city of Kercasoros the Nile 
flows in one single stream, but from this city onwards it is 
parted into three ways ; and one, which is called the Pelusian 
mouth, turns towards the East; the second of the ways goes 
towards the West, and this is called the Canobic mouth ; but 
that one of the ways which is straight runs thus, — when 
the river in its course downwards comes to the point of the 
Delta, then it cuts the Delta through the midst and so issues 
out to the sea. In this we have a portion of the water of the 
river which is not the smallest nor the least famous, and it is 
called the Sebennytic mouth. There are also two other mouths 
which part ofif from the Sebennytic and go to the sea, and 
these are called, one the Saitic,the other the Mendesian mouth. 
The Bolbitinitic, and Bucolic mouths, on the other hand, are 
not natural but made by digging. Moreover also the answer 
given by the Oracle of Ammon bears witness in support of 
my opinion that Egypt is of the extent which I declare it 
to be in my account; and of this answer I heard after I had 
formed my own opinion about Egypt. For those of the 
city of Marea and of Apis, dwelling in the parts of Egypt 
which border on Libya, being of opinion themselves that 
they were Libyans and not Egyptians, and also being bur- 
dened by the rules of religious service, because they desired 
not to be debarred from the use of cows' flesh, sent to 
Ammon saying that they had nought in common with the 
Egyptians, for they dwelt outside the Delta and agreed with 
them in nothing; and they said they desired that it might be 
lawful for them to eat everything without distinction. The 
god however did not permit them to do so, but said that that 
land was Egypt which the Nile came over and watered, and 
that those were Egyptians who dwelling below the city of 
Elephantine drank of that river. Thus was it answered to 


them by the Oracle about this: and the Nile, when it is in 
flood, goes over not only the Delta but also of the land 
which is called Libyan and of that which is called Arabian 
sometimes as much as two days' journey on each side, and 
at times even more than this or at times less. 

As regards the nature of the river, neither from the 
priests nor yet from any other man was I able to obtain 
any knowledge : and I was desirous especially to learn from 
them about these matters, namely why the Nile comes down 
increasing in volume from the summer solstice onwards 
for a hundred days, and then, when it has reached the num- 
ber of these days, turns and goes back, failing in its stream, 
so that through the whole winter season it continues to 
be low, and until the summer solstice returns. Of none 
of these things was I able to receive any account from the 
Egyptians, when I inquired of them what power the Nile 
has whereby it is of a nature opposite to that of all other 
rivers. And I made inquiry, desiring to know both this 
which I say and also why, unlike all other rivers, it does 
not give rise to any breezes blowing from it. However 
some of the Hellenes who desired to gain distinction for 
cleverness have given an account of this water in three 
different ways : two of these I do not think it worth while 
even to speak of except only to indicate their nature; of 
which the one says that the Etesian Winds are the cause 
that makes the river rise, by preventing the Nile from 
flowing out into the sea. But often the Etesian Winds fail 
and yet the Nile does the same work as it is wont to do ; and 
moreover, if these were the cause, all the other rivers also 
which flow in a direction opposed to the Etesian Winds 
ought to have been affected in the same way as the Nile, 
and even more, in as much as they are smaller and present 
to them a feebler flow of streams : but there are many of 
these rivers in Syria and many also in Libya, and they are 
affected in no such manner as the Nile. The second way 
shows more ignorance than that which has been mentioned, 
and it is more marvellous to tell; for it says that the river 
produces these effects because it flows from the Ocean, 
and that the Ocean flows round the whole earth. The 
third of the ways is much the most specious, but neverthe- 


less it is the most mistaken of all : for indeed this way has 
no more truth in it than the rest, alleging as it does that 
the Nile flows from melting snow; whereas it flows out of 
Libya through the midst of the Ethiopians, and so comes out 
into Egypt. How then should it flow from snow, when it 
flows from the hottest parts to those which are cooler? And 
indeed most of the facts are such as to convince a man (one 
at least who is capable of reasoning about such matters), 
that it is not at all likely that it flows from snow. The first 
and greatest evidence is afforded by the winds, which blow 
hot from these regions ; the second is that the land is rain- 
less always and without frost, whereas after snow has 
fallen rain must necessarily come within five days, so that 
if it snowed in those parts rain would fall there; the third 
evidence is afforded by the people dwelling there, who are 
of a black colour by reason of the burning heat. More- 
over kites and swallows remain there through the year and 
do not leave the land; and cranes flying from the cold 
weather which comes on in the region of Scythia come 
regularly to these parts for wintering: if then it snowed ever 
so little in that land through which the Nile flows and in 
which it has its rise, none of these things would take place, 
as necessity compels us to admit. As for him who talked 
about the Ocean, he carried his tale into the region of the 
unknown, and so he need not be refuted; since I for my 
part know of no river Ocean existing, but I think that 
Homer or one of the poets who were before him invented 
the name and introduced it into his verse. 

li hoAvever after I have found fault with the opinions 
proposed, I am bound to declare an opinion of my own 
about the matters which are in doubt, I will tell what to 
my mind is the reason why the Nile increases in the sum- 
mer. In the winter season the Sun, being driven away 
from his former path through the heaven by the stormy 
winds, comes to the upper parts of Libya. Π one would 
set forth the matter in the shortest way, all has now been 
said; for whatever region this god approaches most and 
stands directly above, this it may reasonably be supposed 
is most in want of water, and its native streams of rivers 
are dried up most. However, to set it forth at greater 


length, thus it is: — the Sun passing in his course by the 
upper parts of Libya, does thus, that is to say, since at 
all times the air in those parts is clear and the country is 
warm, because there are no cold winds, in passing through 
it the Sun does just as he was wont to do in the summer, 
when going through the midst of the heaven, that is he 
draws to himself the water, and having drawn it he drives 
it away to the upper parts of the country, and the winds 
take it up and scattering it abroad melt it into rain; so it 
is natural that the winds which blow from this region, 
namely the South and South-west Winds, should be much 
the most rainy of all the winds. I think however that the 
Sun does not send away from himself all the water of the 
Nile of each year, but that he also lets some remain behind 
with himself. Then when the winter becomes milder, the 
Sun returns back again to the midst of the heaven, and 
from that time onwards he draws equally from all rivers; 
but in the meanwhile they flow in large volume, since water 
of rain mingles with them in great quantity, because their 
country receives rain then and is filled with torrent streams. 
In summer however they are weak, since not only the 
showers of rain fail then, but also they are drawn by the 
Sun. The Nile however, alone of all rivers, not having rain 
and being drawn by the Sun, naturally flows during this 
time of winter in much less than its proper volume, that is 
much less than in summer; for then it is drawn equally 
with all the other waters, but in winter it bears the burden 
alone. Thus I suppose the Sun to be the cause of these 
things. He also is the cause in my opinion that the air in 
these parts is dry, since he makes it so by scorching up his 
path through the heaven: thus summer prevails always in 
the upper parts of Libya. If however the station of the 
seasons had been changed, and where now in the heaven 
are placed the North Wind and winter, there was the 
station of the South Wind and of the midday, and 
where now is placed the South Wind, there was the North, 
if this had been so, the Sun being driven from the midst of 
the heaven by the winter and the North Wind would go to 
to the upper parts of Europe, just as now he comes to the 
upper parts of Libya, and passing in his course through- 


out the whole of Europe I suppose that he would do to the 
Ister that which he now works upon the Nile. As to the 
breeze, why none blows from the river, my opinion is that 
from very hot places it is not natural that anything should 
blow, and that a breeze is wont to blow from something cold. 
Let these matters then be as they are and as they were 
at the first: but as to the sources of the Nile, not one either 
of the Egyptians or of the Libyans or of the Hellenes, who 
came to speech with me, professed to know anything, except 
the scribe of the sacred treasury of Athene at the city of 
Sa'is in Egypt. To me however this man seemed not to 
be speaking seriously when he said that he had certain 
knowledge of it; and he said as follows, namely that there 
were two mountains of which the tops ran up to a sharp 
point, situated between the city of Syene, which is in the 
district of Thebes, and Elephantine, and the names of the 
mountains were, of the one Crophi and of the other Mophi. 
From the middle between these mountains flowed (he said) 
the sources of the Nile, which were fathomless in depth, 
and half of the water flowed to Egypt and towards the 
North Wind, the other half to Ethiopia and the South Wind. 
As for the fathomless depth of the source, he said that 
Psammetichos king of Egypt came to a trial of this matter; 
for he had a rope twisted of many thousand fathoms and let 
it down in this place, and it found no bottom. By this the 
scribe (if this which he told was really as he said) gave me 
to understand that there were certain strong eddies there 
and a backward flow, and that since the water dashed 
against the mountains, therefore the sounding-line could 
not come to any bottom when it was let down. From no 
other person was I able to learn anything about this matter; 
but for the rest I learnt so much as here follows by the most 
diligent inquiry; for I went myself as an eye-witness as 
far as the city of Elephantine and from that point onwards 
I gathered knowledge by report. From the city of Elephan- 
tine as one goes up the river there is country which slopes 
steeply; so that here one must attach ropes to the vessel 
on both sides, as one fastens an ox, and so make one's 
way onward; and if the rope break, the vessel is gone at 
once, carried away by the violence of the stream. Through 


this country it is a voyage of about four days in length, and 
in this part the Nile is winding like the river Maiander, and 
the distance amounts to twelve schoines, which one must 
traverse in this manner. Then you will come to a level 
plain, in which the Nile flows round an island named 
Tachompso. (Now in the regions above Elephantine there 
dwell Ethiopians at once succeeding, who also occupy half 
of the island, and Egyptians the other half.) Adjoining 
this island there is a great lake, round which dwell 
Ethiopian nomad tribes ; and when you have sailed through 
this you will come to the stream of the Nile again, which 
flows into this lake. After this you will disembark and make 
a journey by land of forty days; for in the Nile sharp rocks 
stand forth out of the water, and there are many reefs, by 
which it is not possible for a vessel to pass. Then after 
having passed through this country in the forty days which 
I have said, you will embark again in another vessel and 
sail for twelve days ; and after this you will come to a great 
city called Meroe. This city is said to be the mother-city 
of all the other Ethiopians : and they who dwell in it 
reverence of the gods Zeus and Dionysos alone, and these 
they greatly honour; and they have an Oracle of Zeus 
established, and make warlike marches whensoever this 
god commands them by prophesyings and to whatsoever 
place he commands. Sailing from this city you will come to 
the " Deserters" in another period of time equal to that 
in which you came from Elephantine to the mother-city 
of the Ethiopians. Now the name of these " Deserters " 
is Asmach, and this word signifies, when translated into 
the tongue of the Hellenes, "those who stand on the left 
hand of the king." These were two hundred and forty 
thousand Egj-^ptians of the warrior class, who revolted and 
went over to these Ethiopians for the following cause : — 
In the reign of Psammetichos garrisons were set, one 
towards the Ethiopians at the city of Elephantine, another 
towards the Arabians and Assyrians at Daphnai of Pelu- 
sion, and another towards Libya at Marea: and even in 
my own time the garrisons of the Persians too are ordered 
in the same manner as these Λvere in the reign of Psam- 
metichos, for both at Elephantine and at Daphnai the 


Persians Have outposts. The Egyptians then of whom I 
speak had served as outposts for three years and no one 
relieved them from their guard; accordingly they took 
counsel together, and adopting a common plan they all 
in a body revolted from Psammetichos and set out for 
Ethiopia. Hearing this Psammetichos set forth in pur- 
suit, and when he came up with them he entreated them 
much and endeavoured to persuade them not to desert the 
gods of their country and their children and wives: upon 
which it is said that one of them pointed ίο his privy 
member and said that wherever this was, there would they 
have both children and wives. When these came to 
Ethiopia they gave themselves over to the king of the 
Ethiopians; and he rewarded them as follows: — there were 
certain of the Ethiopians who had come to be at variance 
with him; and he bade them drive these out and dwell in 
their land. So since these men settled in the land of the 
Ethiopians, the Ethiopians have come to be of milder man- 
ners, from having learnt the customs of the Egyptians. 
The Nile then, besides that part of its course which is 
in Egypt, is known as far as a four months' journey by 
river and land: for that is the number of months which 
are found by reckoning to be spent in going from Elephan- 
tine to these " Deserters " : and the river runs from the West 
and the setting of the sun. But what comes after that point 
no one can clearly say; for this land is desert by reason of 
the burning heat. Thus much however I heard from men 
of Kyrene, who told me that they had been to the Oracle 
of Ammon, and had come to speech with Etearchos king 
of the Ammonians: and it happened that after speaking 
of other matters they fell to discourse about the Nile and 
how no one knew the sources of it ; and Etearchos said that 
once there came to him men of the Nasamonians (this 
is a Libyan race which dwells in the Syrtis, and also in the 
land to the East of the Syrtis reaching to no great distance), 
and when the Nasamonians came and were asked by him 
whether they were able to tell him anything more than he 
knew about the desert parts of Libya, they said that there 
had been among them certain sons of chief men, who wer6 
of unruly disposition; and th.ese when they grew up to be 


men had devised various other extravagant things and 
also they had told off by lot five of themselves to go to 
see the desert parts of Libya and to try whether they could 
discover more than those who had previously explored fur- 
thest: for in those parts of Libya which are by the 
Northern Sea, beginning from Egypt and going as far as 
the headland of Soloeis, which is the extreme point of 
Libya, Libyans (and of them many races) extend along 
the whole coast, except so much as the Hellenes and 
Phenicians hold; but in the upper parts, which lie above the 
sea-coast and above those people whose land comes down 
to the sea, Libya is full of wild beasts; and in the parts above 
the land of wild beasts it is full of sand, terribly waterless 
and utterly desert. These young men then (said they), 
being sent out by their companions well furnished with sup- 
plies of water and provisions, went first through the in- 
habited country, and after they had passed through this 
they came to the country of wild beasts, and after this they 
passed through the desert, making their journey towards 
the West Wind; and having passed through a great tract 
of sand in many days, they saw at last trees growing in 
a level place; and having come up to them, they were 
beginning to pluck the fruit which was upon the trees: 
but as they began to pluck it, there came upon them small 
men, of less stature than men of the common size, and these 
seized them and carried them away; and neither could the 
Nasamonians understand anything of their speech nor could 
those who were carrying them off understand anything of 
the speech of the Nasamonians: and they led them (so it 
was said) through very great swamps, and after passing 
through these they came to a city in which all the men were 
in size like those who carried them off and in colour of 
skin black; and by the city ran a great river, which ran 
from the West towards the sunrising, and in it were seen 
crocodiles. Of the account given by Etearchos the Am- 
monian let so much suffice as is here said, except that, as 
the men of Kyrene told me, he alleged that the Nasamo- 
nians returned safe home, and that the people to whom they 
had come were all wizards. Now this river which ran by 
the city, Etearchos conjectured to be the Nile, and more- 


over reason compels us to think so ; for the Nile flows from 
Libya and cuts Libya through in the midst, and as I con- 
jecture, judging of what is not known by that which is 
evident to the view, it starts at a distance from its mouth 
equal to that of the Ister : for the river Ister begins from the 
Keltoi and the city of Pyrene and so runs that it divides 
Europe in the midst (now the Keltoi are outside the 
Pillars of Heracles and border upon the Kynesians, who 
dwell furthest towards the sunset of all those who have 
their dwelling in Europe) ; and the Ister ends, having its 
course through the whole of Europe, by flowing into the 
Euxine Sea at the place where the Milesians have their 
settlement of Istria, Now the Ister, since it flows through 
land which is inhabited, is known by the reports of many; 
but of the sources of the Nile no one can give an account, 
for the part of Libya through which it flows is uninhabited 
and desert. About its course however so much as it was 
possible to learn by the most diligent inquiry has been 
told; and it runs out into Egypt. Now Egypt lies nearly 
opposite to the mountain districts of Kilikia ; and from thence 
to Sinope, which lies upon the Euxine Sea, is a journey 
in the same straight line of five days for a man with- 
out encumbrance ; and Sinope lies opposite to the place where 
the Ister runs out into the sea: thus I think that the Nile 
passes through the whole of Libjta and is of equal measure 
with the Ister. 

Of the Nile then let so much sufHce as has been said. 
Of Egypt however I shall make my report at length, be- 
cause it has wonders more in number than any other land, 
and works too it has to show as much as any land, which 
are beyond expression great: for this reason then more 
shall be said concerning it. 

The Egyptians in agreement with their climate, which 
is unlike any other, and with the river, which shows a 
nature different from all other rivers, established for them- 
selves manners and customs in a way opposite to other men 
in almost all matters: for among them the women fre- 
quent the market and carry on trade, while the men remain 
at home and weave ; and whereas others weave pushing the 


woof upwards, the Egyptians push it downwards: the men 
carry their burdens upon their heads and the women upon 
their shoulders: the women make water standing up and 
the men crouching down : they ease themselves in their houses 
and they eat without in the streets, alleging as reason for 
this that it is right to do secretly the things that are unseem- 
ly though necessary, but those which are not unseemly, in 
public: no woman is a minister either of male or female 
divinity, but men of all, both male and female: to support 
their parents the sons are in no way compelled, if they do 
not desire to do so, but the daughters are forced to do so, 
be they never so unwilling. The priests of the gods in 
other lands wear long hair, but in Egypt they shave their 
heads : among other men the custom is that in mourning 
those whom the matter concerns most nearly ha\'e their hair 
cut short, but the Eg3'ptians, when deaths occur, let their 
hair grow long, both that on the head and that on the chin, 
having before been close shaven: other men have their 
daily living separated from beasts, but the Egyptians have 
theirs together with beasts: other men live on wheat and 
on barley, but to any one of the Eg>'ptians who makes his 
living on these it is a great reproach; they make their 
bread of maize, which some call spelt: they knead dough 
with their feet and clay with their hands, with which also 
they gather up dung: and whereas other men, except such 
as have learnt otherwise from the Egyptians, have their 
members as nature made them, the Egj-ptians practice cir- 
cumcision : as to garments, the men wear two each and the 
women but one: and whereas others make fast the rings 
and ropes of the sails outside the ship, the Egv^tians do 
this inside: finally in the writing of characters and reckon- 
ing with pebbles, while the Hellenes carry the hand from 
the left to the right, the Egyptians do this from the right to 
the left; and doing so they say that they do it themselves 
rightwise and the Hellenes leftwise : and they use two kinds 
of characters for writing, of which the one kind is called 
sacred and the other common. 

They are religious excessively beyond all other men, 
and Avith regard to this they have customs as follows: — 
they drink from cups of bronze and rinse them out every 


day, and not some only do this but all : they wear garments 
of linen always newly washed, and this they make a special 
point of practice: they circumcise themselves for the sake 
of cleanliness, preferring to be clean rather than comely. 
The priests shave themselves all over their body every other 
day, so that no lice or any other foul thing may come to 
be upon them when they minister to the gods ; and the 
priests wear garments of linen only and sandals of papyrus, 
and any other garment they may not take nor other sandals ; 
these wash themselves in cold water twice in a day and 
twice again in the night; and other religious services they 
perform (one may almost say) of infinite number. They 
enjoy also good things not a few, for they do not consume 
or spend anything of their own substance, but there is 
sacred bread baked for them and they have each great 
quantity of flesh of oxen and geese coming in to them each 
day, and also wine of grapes is given to them; but it is not 
permitted to them to taste of fish: beans moreover the 
Egyptians do not at all sow in their land, and those which 
grow they neither eat raw nor boil for food ; nay the priests 
do not endure even to look upon them, thinking this to be 
an unclean kind of pulse : and there is not one priest only 
for each of the gods but many, and of them one is chief- 
priest, and whenever a priest dies his son is appointed to 
his place. 

The males of the ox kind they consider to belong to 
Epaphos, and on account of him they test them in the fol- 
lowing manner: — If the priest sees one single black hair 
upon the beast he counts it not clean for sacrifice; and one 
of the priests who is appointed for the purpose makes in- 
vestigation of these matters, both when the beast is standing 
upright and when it is lying on its back, drawing out its 
tongue moreover, to see if it is clean in respect of the 
appointed signs, which I shall tell of in another part of 
the history: he looks also at the hairs of the tail to see if 
it has them growing in the natural manner; and if 
it be clean in respect of all these things, he marks it with 
a piece of papyrus, rolling this round the horns, and then 
when he has plastered sealing-earth over it he sets upon 
it the seal of his signet-ring, and after that they take the 


animal away. But for one who sacrifices a beast not sealed 
the penalty appointed is death. In this way then the beast 
is tested; and their appointed manner of sacrifice is as 
follows : — they lead the sealed beast to the altar where they 
happen to be sacrificing, and then kindle a fire : after that, 
having poured libations of Λvine over the altar so that it 
runs down upon the victim and having called upon the god, 
they cut its throat, and having cut its throat they sever 
the head from the body. The body then of the beast they 
flay, but upon the head they make many imprecations first, 
and then they who have a market and Hellenes sojourning 
among them for trade, these carry it to the market-place 
and sell it, while they who have no Hellenes among them 
cast it away into the river : and this is the form of impre- 
cation which they utter upon the heads, praying that if any 
evil be about to befall either themselves who are offering 
sacrifice or the land of Egypt in general, it may come rather 
upon this head. Now as regards the heads of the beasts 
which are sacrificed and the pouring over them of the wine, 
all the Egyptians have the same customs equally for all 
their sacrifices; and by reason of this custom none of the 
Egyptians eat of the head either of this or of any other 
kind of animal: but the manner of disembowelling the vic- 
tims and of burning them is appointed among them dif- 
ferently for different sacrifices; I shall speak however of 
the sacrifices to that goddess whom they regard as the 
greatest of all, and to whom they celebrate the greatest 
feast. — When they have flayed the bullock and made im- 
precation, they take out the whole of its lower entrails but 
leave in the body the upper entrails and the fat; and they 
sever from it the legs and the end of the loin and the 
shoulders and the neck : and this done, they fill the rest of 
the body of the animal with consecrated loaves and honey 
and raisins and figs and frankincense and myrrh and every 
other kind of spices, and having filled it with these they 
offer it, pouring over it great abundance of oil. They 
make their sacrifice after fasting, and while the offerings 
are being burnt, they all beat themselves for mourning, and 
when they have finished beating themselves they set forth 
as a feast that which they left unburnt of the sacrifice. 


The clean males then of the ox kind, both full-grown 
animals and calves, are sacr::";3d by all the Egyptians; 
the females however they may not sacrifice, but these are 
sacred to Isis; for the figure of Isis is in the form of a 
woman with cow's horns, just as the Hellenes present lo in 
pictures, and all the Egyptians without distinction reverence 
cows far more than any other kind of cattle; for which 
reason neither man nor woman of Egyptian race would 
kiss a man who is a Hellene on the mouth, nor will they 
use a knife or roasting-spits or a caldron belonging to a 
Hellene, nor taste of the flesh even of a clean animal if it 
has been cut with the knife of a Hellene. And the cattle 
of this kind which die they bury in the following manner: — 
the females they cast into the river, but the males they 
bury, each people in the suburb of their town, with one 
of the horns, or sometimes both, protruding to mark the 
place; and when the bodies have rotted away and the ap- 
pointed time comes on, then to each city comes a boat from 
that which is called the island of Prosopitis (this is in the 
Delta, and the extent of its curcuit is nine schoines). In 
this island of Prosopitis is situated, besides many other 
cities, that one from which the boats come to take up the 
bones of the oxen, and the name of the city is Atarbechis, 
and in it there is set up a holy temple of Aphrodite. From 
this city many go abroad in various directions, some to 
one city and others to another, and Λvhen they have dug up 
the bones of the oxen they carry them off, and coming to- 
gether they bury them in one single place. In the same 
manner as they bury the oxen they bury also their other 
cattle when they die ; for about them also they have the 
same law laid down, and these also they abstain from kill- 

Now all who have a temple set up to the Theban Zeus 
or who are of the district of Thebes, these, I say, all sacri- 
fice goats and abstain from sheep: for not all the Egyp- 
tians equally reverence the same gods, except only Isis 
and Osiris (who they say is Dionysos), these they all 
reverence alike: but they who have a temple of Mendes or 
belong to the Mendesian district, these abstain from goats 
and sacrifice sheep. Now the men of Thebes and those 


who after their example abstain from sheep, say that this 
custom was established :::.. j them for the cause which 
follows: — Heracles (th:/ say) had an earnest desire to see 
Zeus, and Zeus did not desire to be seen of him; and at 
last when Heracles was urgent in entreaty Zeus contrived 
this device, that is to say, he flayed a ram and held in front 
of him the head of the ram which he had cut oi¥, and he 
put on over him the fleece and then showed himself to him. 
Hence the Egyptians make the image of Zeus with the 
face of a ram; and the Ammonians do so also after their 
example, being settlers both from the Egyptians and from 
the Ethiopians, and using a language which is a medley of 
both tongues : and in my opinion it is from this god that 
the Ammonians took the name which they have, for the 
Egyptians call Zeus Amim. The Thebans then do not 
sacrifice rams but hold them sacred for this reason ; on 
one day however in the year, on the feast of Zeus, they cut 
up in the same manner and flay one single ram and cover 
with its skin the image of Zeus, and then they bring up to 
it another image of Heracles. This done, all who are in 
the temple beat themselves in lamentation for the ram, and 
then they bury it in a sacred tomb. 

About Heracles I heard the account given that he was 
of the number of the twelve gods; but of the other Heracles 
whom the Hellenes know I was not able to hear in any part 
of Egypt: and moreover to prove that the Egyptians did 
not take the name of Heracles from the Hellenes, but rather 
the Hellenes from the Egyptians, — that is to say those 
of the Hellenes who gave the name Heracles to the son of 
Amphitryon, — of that, I say, besides many other evidences 
there is chiefly this, namely that the parents of this Hera- 
cles, Amphitryon and Alcmene, were both of Egypt by 
descent, and also that the Egyptians say that they do not 
know the names either of Poseidon or of the Dioscuroi, 
nor have these been accepted by them as gods among the 
other gods; whereas if they had received from the Hellenes 
the name of any divinity, they would naturally have pre- 
served the memory of these most of all, assuming that in 
those times as now some of the Hellenes were wont to 
make voyages and were seafaring folk, as I suppose and as 


my judgment compels me to think; so that the Eg>'ptians 
would have learnt the names of these gods even more than 
that of Heracles. In fact however Heracles is a very 
ancient Egyptian god; and (as they say themselves) it is 
seventeen thousand years to the beginning of the reign 
of Amasis from the time when the twelve gods, of whom 
they count that Heracles is one, were begotten of the eight 
gods. I moreover, desiring to know something certain of 
these matters so far as might be, made a voyage also to 
Tyre of Phenicia, hearing that in that place there was a 
holy temple of Heracles; and I saw that it was richly fur- 
nished with many votive offerings besides, and especially 
there were in it two pillars, the one of pure gold and the 
other of an emerald stone of such size as to shine by night: 
and having come to speech with the priests of the god, I 
asked them how long a time it was since their temple had 
been set up: and these also I found to be at variance with 
the Hellenes, for they said that at the same time when Tyre 
was founded, the temple of the god also had been set up, 
and that it was a period of two thousand three hundred 
years since their people began to dwell at Tyre. I saw also 
at Tyre another temple of Heracles, with the surname 
Thasian ; and I came to Thasos also and there I found 
a temple of Heracles set up by the Phenicians, who had 
sailed out to seek for Europa and had colonised Thasos; 
and these things happened full five generations of men 
before Heracles the son of Amphitryon was born in Hellas. 
So then my inquiries show clearly that Heracles is an 
ancient god, and those of the Hellenes seem to me to act 
most rightly who have two temples of Heracles set up, and 
who sacrifice to the one as an immortal god and with the 
title Olympian, and make offerings of the dead to the other 
as a hero. Moreover, besides many other stories which the 
Hellenes tell without due consideration, this tale is especially 
foolish which they tell about Heracles, namely that when 
he came to Egypt, the Egyptians put on him wreaths and 
led him forth in procession to sacrifice him to Zeus; and 
he for some time kept quiet, but when they were beginning 
the sacrifice of him at the altar, he betook himself to 
prowess and slew them all. I for my part am of opinion 


that the Hellenes Avhen they tell this tale are altogether 
without knowledge of the nature and customs of the Egyp- 
tians; for how should they for whom it is not lawful to 
sacrifice even beasts, except swine and the males of oxen 
and calves (such of them as are clean) and geese, how 
should these sacrifice human beings? Besides this, how 
is it in nature possible that Heracles, being one person only 
and moreover a man (as they assert), should slay many 
myriads? Having said so much of these matters, we pray 
that we may have grace from both the gods and the heroes 
for our speech. 

Now the reason why those of the Egyptians whom I 
have mentioned do not sacrifice goats, female or male, is 
this: — the Mendesians count Pan to be one of the eight 
gods (now these eight gods they say came into being be- 
fore the twelve gods), and the painters and image-makers 
represent in painting and in sculpture the figure of Pan, 
just as the Hellenes do, with goat's face and legs, not 
supposing him to be really like this but to resemble the 
other gods; the cause however why they represent him in 
this form I prefer not to say. The Mendesians then 
reverence all goats and the males more than the females 
(and the goatherds too have greater honour than other 
herdsmen), but of the goats one especially is reverenced, 
and when he dies there is great mourning in all the Mende- 
sian district: and both the goat and Pan are called in the 
Egyptian tongue Mendes. Moreover in my lifetime there 
happened in that district this marvel, that is to say a he-goat 
had intercourse with a woman publicly, and this was so 
done that all men might have evidence of it. 

The pig is accounted by the Egyptians an abominable 
animal; and first, if any of them in passing by touch a 
pig, he goes into the river and dips himself forthwith in the 
water together with his garments; and then too swine- 
herds, though they be native Egyptians, unlike all others do 
not enter any of the temples in Egypt, nor is anyone willing 
to give his daughter in marriage to one of them or to take 
a wife from among them; but the swineherds both give in 
marriage to one another and take from one another. Now 
to the other gods the Egyptians do not think it right to 


sacrifice swine ; but to the Moon and to Dionysos alone at 
the same time and on the same full-moon they sacrifice 
swine, and then eat their flesh: and as to the reason why, 
when they abominate swine at all their other feasts, they 
sacrifice them at this, there is a story told by the Egyptians ; 
and this story I know, but it is not a seemly one for me to 
tell. Now the sacrifice of the swine to the Moon is per- 
formed as follows : — when the priest has slain the victim, 
he puts together the end of the tail and the spleen and the 
caul, and covers them up with the Λvhole of the fat of the 
animal which is about the paunch, and then he offers them 
with fire; and the rest of the flesh they eat on that day of 
full moon upon which they have held the sacrifice, but on 
any day after this they will not taste of it: the poor how- 
ever among them by reason of the scantiness of their means 
shape pigs of dough and having baked them they offer these 
as a sacrifice. Then for Dionysos on the eve of the festival 
each one kills a pig by cutting its throat before his own 
doors, and after that he gives the pig to the swineherd 
who sold it to him, to carry away again ; and the rest of the 
feast of Dionysos is celebrated by the Eg}'ptians in the same 
way as by the Hellenes in almost all things except choral 
dances, but instead of the phallos they haΛ'e invented an- 
other contrivance, namely figures of about a cubit in height 
worked by strings, which women carry about the villages, 
with the privy member made to move and not much less in 
size than the rest of the body: and a flute goes before and 
they follow singing the praises of Dionysos. As to the 
reason why the figure has this member larger than is natural 
and moves it. though it moves -no other part of the body, 
about this there is a sacred story told. Now I think that 
Melampus the son of Amytheon was not without knowledge 
of these rites of sacrifice, but was acquainted with them: for 
Melampus is he who first set forth to the Hellenes the name 
of Dionysos and the manner of sacrifice and the procession 
of the phallos. Strictly speaking indeed, he when he made 
it known did not take in the whole, but those wise men who 
came after him made it known more at large. Melampus 
then is he Λvho taught of the phallos which is carried in pro- 
cession for Dionysos, and from him the Hellenes learnt to 


do that which they do. I say then that Melampus being a 
man of ability contrived for himself an art of divination, 
and having learnt from Egypt he taught the Hellenes many 
things, and among them those that concern Dionysos, mak- 
ing changes in some few points of them : for I shall not say 
that that which is done in worship of the god in Egypt came 
accidentally to be the same with that which is done among 
the Hellenes, for then these rites Avould have been in 
character with the Hellenic worship and not lately brought 
in ; nor certainly shall I say that the Egyptians took from the 
Hellenes either this or any other customary observance: 
but I think it most probable that Melampus learnt the 
matters concerning Dionysos from Cadmos the Tyrian and 
from those who came with him from Phenicia to the land 
which we now call Boeotia. 

Moreover the naming of almost all the gods has come 
to Hellas from Eg>-pt: for that it has come from the Bar- 
barians I find by inquiry is true, and I am of opinion 
that most probably it has come from Egypt, because, except 
in the case of Poseidon and the Dioscuroi (in accordance 
with that which I have said before), and also of Hera and 
Hestia and Themis and the Charites and Nereids, the 
Egyptians have had the names of all the other gods in their 
countr}' for all time. What I say here is that which the 
Egyptians say themselves : but as for the gods whose names 
they profess that they do not know, these I think received 
their naming from the Pelasgians, except Poseidon; but 
about this god the Hellenes learnt from the Libyans, for 
no people except the Libyans have had the nam.e of 
Poseidon from the first and have paid honour to this god 
always. Nor, it may be added, have the Egyptians any 
custom of worshipping heroes. These observances then, 
and others besides these which I shall mention, the Hellenes 
have adopted from the Egyptians; but to make, as they do, 
the images of Hermes with the phallos they have learnt 
not from the Egyptians but from the Pelasgians, the cus- 
tom having been received by the Athenians first of all the 
Hellenes and from these by the rest; for just at the time 
when the Athenians were beginning to rank among the 
Hellenes, the Pelasgians became dwellers with them in theit 


land, and from this very cause it was that they began to 
be counted as Hellenes. Whosoever has been initiated in 
the mysteries of the Cabeiroi, which the Samothrakians 
perform having received them from the Pelasgians, that 
man knows the meaning of my speech; for these very 
Pelasgians who became dwellers with the Athenians used 
to dwell before that time in Samothrake, and from them 
the Samothrakians received their mysteries. So then 
the Athenians were the first of the Hellenes who made the 
images of Hermes with the phallos, having learnt from the 
Pelasgians; and the Pelasgians told a sacred story about 
it, which is set forth in the mysteries in Samothrake. Now 
the Pelasgians formerly were wont to make all their sacri- 
fices calling upon the gods in prayer, as I know from that 
which I heard at Dodona, but they gave no title or name to 
any of them, for they had not yet heard any, but they called 
them gods {θζοόζ) from some such notion as this, that they 
had set {θέντες') in order all things and so had the distribu- 
tion of everything. Afterwards when much time had 
elapsed, they learnt from Egypt the names of the gods, all 
except Dionysos, for his name they learnt long after- 
wards; and after a time the Pelasgians consulted the Oracle 
at Dodona about the names, for this prophetic seat is ac- 
counted to be the most ancient of the Oracles which are 
among the Hellenes, and at that time it was the only one. 
So when the Pelasgians asked the Oracle at Dodona 
whether they should adopt the names which had come from 
the Barbarians, the Oracle in reply bade them make use 
of the names. From this time they sacrificed using the 
names of the gods, and from the Pelasgians the Hellenes 
afterwards received them : but whence the several gods had 
their birth, or whether they all were from the beginning, 
and of what form they are, they did not learn till yesterday, 
as it were, or the day before: for Hesiod and Homer I 
suppose were four hundred years before my time and not 
more, and these are they who made a theogony for the 
Hellenes and gave the titles to the gods and distributed to 
them honours and arts, and set forth their forms: but the 
poets who are said to have been before these men were 
really in my opinion after them. Of these things the first 


are said by the priestesses of Dodona, and the latter things, 
those namely which have regard to Hesiod and Homer, by 

As regards the Oracles both that among the Hellenes and 
that in Libya, the Egyptians tell the following tale. The 
priests of the Theban Zeus told me that two women in the 
service of the temple had been carried away from Thebes 
by Phenicians, and that they had heard that one of them 
had been sold to go into Libya and the other to the Hellenes ; 
and these women, they said, were they who first founded 
the prophetic seats among the nations which have been 
named : and when I inquired whence they knew so perfectly 
of this tale which they told, they said in reply that a great 
search had been made by the priests after these women, and 
that they had not been able to find them, but they had heard 
afterwards this tale about them which they were telling. 
This I heard from the priests at Thebes, and what follows 
is said by the prophetesses of Dodona. They say that two 
black doves flew from Thebes in Egypt, and came one of 
them to Libya and the other to their land. And this latter 
settled upon an oak-tree and spoke with human voice, saying 
that it was necessary that a prophetic seat of Zeus should be 
established in that place; and they supposed that that was 
of the gods which was announced to them, and made one 
accordingly : and the dove which went away to the Libyans, 
they say, bade the Libyans make an Oracle of Ammon ; and 
this also is of Zeus. The priestesses of Dodona told me 
these things, of whom the eldest was named Promeneia, the 
next after her Timarete, and the youngest Nicandra; and 
the other people of Dodona who were engaged about the 
temple gave accounts agreeing with theirs. I however have 
an opinion about the matter as follows: — If the Phenicians 
did in truth carry away the consecrated women and sold one 
of them into Libya and the other into Hellas, I suppose that 
in the country now called Hellas, which was formerly called 
Pelasgia, this woman was sold into the land of the Thespro- 
tians ; and then being a slave there she set up a sanctuary 
of Zeus under a real oak-tree ; as indeed it was natural that 
being an attendant of the sanctuary of Zeus at Thebes, she 
should there, in the place to which she had come, have a 

HC— Vol. 33 (1) 


memory of him; and after this, when she got understanding 
of the Hellenic tongue, she established an Oracle, and she 
reported, I suppose, that her sister had been sold in Libya 
by the same Phenicians by whom she herself had been sold. 
Moreover, I think that the women were called doves by the 
people of Dodona for the reason that they were Barbarians 
and because it seemed to them that they uttered voice like 
birds ; but after a time (they say) the dove spoke with human 
voice, that is when the woman began to speak so that they 
could understand; but so long as she spoke a Barbarian 
tongue she seemed to them to be uttering voice like a bird: 
for if it had been really a dove, how could it speak with 
human voice ? And in saying that the dove was black, they 
indicate that the woman Avas Egyptian. The ways of deliver- 
ing oracles too at Thebes in Egypt and at Dodona closely 
resemble one another, as it happens, and also the method o£ 
divination by victims has come from Egypt. 

Moreover, it is true also that the Egyptians were the first 
of men who made solemn assemblies and processions and 
approaches to the temples, and from them the Hellenes have 
learnt them, and my evidence for this is that the Egyptian 
celebrations of these have been held from a very ancient 
time, whereas the Hellenic were introduced but lately. The 
Egyptians hold their solemn assemblies not once in the year 
but often, especially and with the greatest zeal and devotion 
at the city of Bubastis for Artemis, and next at Busiris for 
Isis; for in this last-named city there is a very great temple 
of Isis, and this city stands in the middle of the Delta of 
Egypt; now Isis is in the tongue of the Hellenes Demeter: 
thirdly, they have a solemn assembly at the city of Sals for 
Athene, fourthly at Heliopolis for the Sun (Helios), fifthly 
at the city of Buto in honour of Leto, and sixthly at the city 
of Papremis for Ares. Now, when they are coming to the 
city of Bubastis they do as follows: — they sail men and 
women together, and a great multitude of each sex in every 
boat; and some of the women have rattles and rattle with 
them, while some of the men play the flute during the whole 
time of the voyage, and the rest, both women and men, sing 
and clap their hands ; and when as they sail they come 
opposite to any city on the way they bring the boat to land, 

HC— Vol. 33 (2) 


and some of the women continue to do as I have said, others 
cry aloud and jeer at the women in that city, some dance, 
and some stand up and pull up their garments. This they 
do by every city along the river-bank; and when they come 
to Bubastis they hold festival celebrating great sacrifices, 
and more wine of grapes is consumed upon that festival 
than during the whole of the rest of the year. To this place 
(so say the natives) they come together year by year even 
to the number of seventy myriads of men and women, be- 
sides children. Thus it is done here; and how they celebrate 
the festival in honour of Isis at the city of Busiris has been 
told by me before: for, as I said, they beat themselves in 
mourning after the sacrifice, all of them both men and 
women, very many myriads of people; but for whom they 
beat themselves it is not permitted to me by religion to say : 
and so many as there are of the Carians dwelling in Egypt 
do this even more than the Egyptians themselves, inasmuch 
as they cut their foreheads also with knives; and by this 
it is manifested that they are strangers and not Egyptians. 
At the times when they gather together at the city of Sais 
for their sacrifices, on a certain night they all kindle lamps 
many in number in the open air round about the houses ; now 
the lamps are saucers full of salt and oil mixed, and the wick 
floats by itself on the surface, and this burns during the 
whole night; and to the festival is given the name Lychnocaia 
(the lighting of lamps). Moreover those of the Egyptians 
who have not come to this solemn assembly observe the night 
of the festival and themselves also light lamps all of them, 
and thus not in Sais alone are they lighted, but over all 
Egypt: and as to the reason why light and honour are 
allotted to this night, about this there is a sacred story told. 
To Heliopolis and -Buto they go year by year and do sacrifice 
only : but at Papremis they do sacrifice and worship as else- 
where, and besides that, when the sun begins to go down, 
while some few of the priests are occupied with the image 
of the god, the greater number of them stand in the entrance 
of the temple with wooden clubs, and other persons to the 
number of more than a thousand men with purpose to per- 
form a vow, these also having all of them staves of wood, 
stand in a body opposite to those: and the image, which is 


in a small shrine of wood covered over with gold, they take 
out on the day before to another sacred building. The few 
then who have been left about the image, draw a wain with 
four wheels, which bears the shrine and the image that is 
within the shrine, and the other priests standing in the gate- 
way try to prevent it from entering, and the men who are 
under a vow come to the assistance of the god and strike 
them, while the others defend themselves. Then there comes 
to be a hard fight with staves, and they break one another's 
heads, and I am of opinion that many even die of the wounds 
they receive; the Egyptians however told me that no one 
died. This solemn assembly the people of the place say that 
they established for the following reason: — the mother of 
Ares, they say, used to dwell in this temple, and Ares, having 
been brought up away from her, when he grew up came 
thither desiring to visit his mother, and the attendants of 
his mother's temple, not having seen him before, did not 
permit him to pass in, but kept him away ; and he brought 
men to help him from another city and handled roughly the 
attendants of the temple, and entered to visit his mother. 
Hence, they say, this exchange of blows has become the 
custom in honour of Ares upon his festival. 

The Egyptians were the first who made it a point of reli- 
gion not to lie with women in temples, nor to enter into 
temples after going away from women without first bathing: 
for almost all other men except the Egyptians and the Hel- 
lenes lie with women in temples and enter into a temple after 
going away from women without bathing, since they hold 
that there is no difference in this respect between men and 
beasts: for they say that they see beasts and the various 
kinds of birds coupling together both in the temples and in 
the sacred enclosures of the gods; if then this were not 
pleasing to the god, the beasts would not do so. 

Thus do these defend that which they do, which by me 
is disallowed: but the Egyptians are excessively careful in 
their observances, both in other matters which concern the 
sacred rites and also in those which follow: — Egypt, though 
it borders upon Libya, does not very much abound in wild 
animals, but such as they have are one and all accounted by 
them sacred, some of them living with men and others not. 


But if I should say for what reasons the sacred animals have 
been thus dedicated, I should fall into discourse of matters 
pertaining to the gods, of which I most desire not to speak ; 
and what I have actually said touching slightly upon them, 
I said because I was constrained by necessity. About these 
animals there is a custom of this kind: — persons have been 
appointed of the Egyptians, both men and women, to pro- 
vide the food for each kind of beast separately, and their 
office goes down from father to son ; and those who dwell in 
the various cities perform vows to them thus, that is, when 
they make a vow to the god to whom the animal belongs, 
they shave the head of their children either the whole or 
the half or the third part of it, and then set the hair in the 
balance against silver, and whatever it weighs, this the man 
gives to the person who provides for the animals, and she 
cuts up fish of equal value and gives it for food to the 
animals. Thus food for their support has been appointed: 
and if any one kill any of these animals, the penalty, if he do 
it with his own will, is death, and if against his will, such 
penalty as the priests may appoint: but whosoever shall kill 
an ibis or a hawk, whether it be with his will or against his 
will, must die. Of the animals that live with men there are 
great numbers, and would be many more but for the acci- 
dents which befall the cats. For when the females have 
produced young they are no longer in the habit of going to 
the males, and these seeking to be united with them are not 
able. To this end then they contrive as follows, — they either 
take away by force or remove secretly the young from the 
females and kill them (but after killing they do not eat them), 
and the females being deprived of their young and desiring 
more, therefore come to the males, for it is a creature that 
is fond of its young. Moreover when a fire occurs, the cats 
seem to be divinely possessed ; for while the Egyptians stand 
at intervals and look after the cats, not taking any care to 
extinguish the fire, the cats slipping through or leaping over 
the men, jump into the fire; and when this happens, great 
mourning comes upon the Egyptians. And in whatever 
houses a cat has died by a natural death, all those who dwell 
in this house shave their eyebrows only, but those in whose 
houses a dog has died shave their whole body and also thei^ 


head. The cats when they are dead are carried away to 
sacred buildings in the city of Bubastis, where after being 
embalmed they are buried; but the dogs they bury each 
people in their own city in sacred tombs ; and the ichneumons 
are buried just in the same way as the dogs. The shrcAV- 
mice however and the hawks they carry away to the city 
of Buto, and the ibises to Hermopolis ; the bears (which are 
not commonly seen) and the wolves, not much larger in size 
than foxes, they bury on the spot where they are found 

Of the crocodile the nature is as follows: — during the four 
most wintry months this creature eats nothing: she has four 
feet and is an animal belonging to the land and the water 
both ; for she produces and hatches eggs on the land, and 
the most part of the day she remains upon dry land, but the 
whole of the night in the river, for the water in truth is 
warmer than the unclouded open air and the dew. Of all 
the mortal creatures of which we have knowledge this grows 
to the greatest bulk from the smallest beginning; for the 
eggs which she produces are not much larger than those 
of geese and the newly-hatched young one is in proportion 
to the egg, but as he grows he becomes as much as seventeen 
cubits long and sometimes yet larger. He has eyes like those 
of a pig and teeth large and tusky, in proportion to the size 
of his body; but unlike all other beasts he grows no tongue, 
neither does he move his lower jaw, but brings the upper 
jaw towards the lower, being in this too unlike all other 
beasts. He has moreover strong claws and a scaly hide upon 
his back which cannot be pierced; and he is blind in the 
water, but in the air he is of a very keen sight. Since he has 
his living in the water he keeps his mouth all full within of 
leeches ; and whereas all other birds and beasts fly from him, 
the trochilus is a creature which is at peace with him, seeing 
that from her he receives benefit; for the crocodile having 
come out of the water to the land and then having opened his 
mouth (this he is wont to do generally towards the West 
Wind), the trochilus upon that enters into his mouth and 
swallows down the leeches, and he being benefited is pleased 
and does no harm to the trochilus. Now for some of the 
Egyptians the crocodiles are sacred animals,, and for others 


not so, but they treat them on the contrary as enemies: 
those however who dwell about Thebes and about the lake 
of Moiris hold them to be most sacred, and each of these two 
peoples keeps one crocodile selected from the whole number, 
which has been trained to tameness, and they put hanging 
ornaments of molten stone and of gold into the ears of these 
and anklets round the front feet, and they give them food 
appointed and victims of sacrifices and treat them as well 
as possible while they live, and after they are dead they bury 
them in sacred tombs, embalming them : but those who dwell 
about the city of Elephantine even eat them, not holding 
them to be sacred. They are called not crocodiles but 
champsai, and the lonians gave them the name of crocodile, 
comparing their form to that of the crocodiles (lizards) 
which appear in their country in the stone walls. There are 
many ways in use of catching them and of various kinds: 
I shall describe that which to me seems the most worthy of 
being told. A man puts the back of a pig upon a hook as 
bait, and lets it go into the middle of the river, while he him- 
self upon the bank of the river has a young live pig, which 
he beats; and the crocodile hearing its cries makes for the 
direction of the sound, and when he finds the pig's back he 
swallows it down : then they pull, and when he is drawn 
out to land, first of all the hunter forthwith plasters up his 
eyes with mud, and having so done he very easily gets the 
mastery of him, but if he does not do so he has much trouble. 

The river-horse is sacred in the district of Papremis, but 
for the other Egj^tians he is not sacred; and this is the ap- 
pearance which he presents: he is four-footed, cloven- 
hoofed like an ox, flat-nosed, with a mane like a horse and 
showing teeth like tusks, with a tail and voice like a horse, 
and in size as large as the largest ox; and his hide is so ex- 
ceedingly thick that when it has been dried shafts of javelins 
are made of it. There are moreover otters in the river, which 
they consider to be sacred ; and of fish also they esteem 
that which is called the lepidotos to be sacred, and also the 
eel ; and these they say are sacred to the Nile : and of birds 
the fox-goose. 

There is also another sacred bird called the phoenix which 
I did not myself see except in painting, for in truth he comes 


to them very rarely, at intervals, as the people of HeliopoHs 
say, of five hundred years; and these say that he comes 
regularly when his father dies ; and if he be like the painting, 
he is of this size and nature, that is to say, some of his 
feathers are of gold colour and others red, and in outline 
and size he is as nearly as possible like an eagle. This bird 
they say (but I cannot believe the story) contrives as fol- 
lows : — setting forth from Arabia he conveys his father, they 
say, to the temple of the Sun (Helios) plastered up in myrrh, 
and buries him in the temple of the Sun; and he conveys 
him thus : — he forms first an egg of myrrh as large as he is 
able to carry, and then he makes trial of carrying it, and 
when he has made trial sufficiently, then he hollows out the 
egg and places his father within it and plasters over with 
other myrrh that part of the egg where he hollowed it out 
to put his father in, and when his father is laid in it, it 
proves (they say) to be of the same weight as it was; 
and after he has plastered it up, he conveys the whole to 
Egypt to the temple of the Sun. Thus they say that this 
bird does. 

There are also about Thebes sacred serpents, not at all 
harmful to men, which are small in size and have two horns 
growing from the top of the head: these they bury when 
they die in the temple of Zeus, for to this god they say that 
they are sacred. There is a region moreover in Arabia, 
situated nearly over against the city of Buto, to which place 
I came to inquire about the winged serpents: and when I 
came thither I saw bones of serpents and spines in quantity 
so great that it is impossible to make report of the number, 
and there were heaps of spines, some heaps large and others 
less large and others smaller still than these, and these heaps 
were many in number. This region in which the spines are 
scattered upon the ground is of the nature of an entrance 
from a narrow mountain pass to a great plain, which plain 
adjoins the plain of Egypt; and the story goes that at the 
beginning of spring winged serpents from Arabia fly towards 
Egypt, and the birds called ibises meet them at the entrance 
to this country and do not sut¥er the serpents to go by but 
kill them. On account of this deed it is (say the Arabians) 
that the ibis has come to be greatly honoured by the 


Egyptians, and the Egyptians also agree that it is for this 
reason that they honour these birds. The outward form of 
the ibis is this : — it is a deep black all over, and has legs like 
those of a crane and a very curved beak, and in size it is 
about equal to a rail: this is the appearance of the black 
kind which fight with the serpents, but of those which most 
crowd round men's feet (for there are two several kinds of 
ibises) the head is bare and also the whole of the throat, and 
it is white in feathering except the head and neck and the 
extremities of the wings and the rump (in all these parts of 
which I have spoken it is a deep black), while in legs and in 
the form of the head it resembles the other. As for the 
serpent its form is like that of the watersnake; and it has 
wings not feathered but most nearly resembling the wings 
of the bat. Let so much suffice as has been said now con- 
cerning sacred animals. 

Of the Egyptians themselves, those who dv/ell in the part of 
Egypt which is sown for crops practise memory more than 
any other men and are the most learned in history by far of all 
those of whom I have had experience: and their manner of 
life is as follows: — For three successive days in each month 
they purge, hunting after health with emetics and clysters, 
and they think that all the diseases which exist are produced 
in men by the food on which they live : for the Egyptians 
are from other causes also the most healthy of all men next 
after the Libyans (in my opinion on account of the seasons, 
because the seasons do not change, for by the changes of 
things generally, and especially of the seasons, diseases are 
most apt to be produced in men), and as to their diet, it is 
as follows : — they eat bread, making loaves of maize, which 
they call kyllestis, and they use habitually a wine made out 
of barley, for vines they have not in their land. Of their 
fish some they dry in the sun and then eat them without 
cooking, others they eat cured in brine. Of birds they eat 
quails and ducks and small birds without cooking, after first 
curing them; and everything else which they have belonging 
to the class of birds or fishes, except such as have been set 
apart by them as sacred, they eat roasted or boiled. In the 
entertainments of the rich among them, when they have 


finished eating, a man bears round a wooden figure of a dead 
body in a coffin, made as like the reality as may be both by 
painting and carving, and measuring about a cubit or two 
cubits each way ; and this he shows to each of those who are 
drinking together, saying : " When thou lookest upon this, 
drink and be merry, for thou shalt be such as this when thou 
art dead." Thus they do at their carousals. The customs 
which they practise are derived from their fathers and they 
do not acquire others in addition ; but besides other customary 
things among them Avhich are worthy of mention, they have 
one song, that of Linos, the same who is sung of both in 
Phenicia and in Cyprus and elsewhere, having however a 
name different according to the various nations. This song 
agrees exactly with that which the Hellenes sing calling on 
the name of Linos, so that besides many other things- about 
which I wonder among those matters which concern Egypt, 
I wonder especially about this, namely whence they got the 
song of Linos. It is evident however that they have sung 
this song from immemorial time, and in the Egyptian tongue 
Linos is called Maneros. The Egyptians told me that he 
was the only son of him who first became king of Egypt, and 
that he died before his time and was honoured with these 
lamentations by the Egyptians, and that this was their first 
and only song. In another respect the Egyptians are in 
agreement with some of the Hellenes, namely with the 
Lacedemonians, but not with the rest, that is to say, the 
younger of them when they meet the elder give way and 
move out of the path, and when their elders approach, they 
rise out of their seat. In this which follows however they 
are not in agreement with any of the Hellenes, — instead of 
addressing one another in the roads they do reverence, lower- 
ing their hand down to their knee. They wear tunics of 
linen about their legs with fringes, which they call calasiris; 
above these they have garments of white wool thrown over: 
woolen garments however are not taken into the temples, 
nor are they buried with them, for this is not permitted by 
religion. In these points they are in agreement with the 
observances called Orphic and Bacchic (which are really 
Egyptian), and also with those of the Pythagoreans, for one 
who takes part in these mysteries is also forbidden by re- 


ligious rule to be buried in woolen garments; and about 
this there is a sacred story told. 

Besides these things the Egyptians have found out also to 
what god each month and each day belongs, and what 
fortunes a man will meet with who is born on any particular 
day, and how he will die, and what kind of a man he will be: 
and these inventions were taken up by those of the Hellenes 
who occupied themselves about poesy. Portents too have been 
found out by them more than by all other men besides; for 
when a portent has happened, they observe and write down 
the event which comes of it, and if ever afterwards anything 
resembling this happens, they believe that the event which 
comes of it will be similar. Their divination is ordered 
thus : — the art is assigned not to any man but to certain of 
the gods, for there are in their land Oracles of Heracles, of 
Apollo, of Athene, of Artemis, of Ares, and of Zeus, and 
moreover that which they hold most in honour of all, namely 
the Oracle of Leto which is in the city of Buto. The manner 
of divination however is not established among them ac- 
cording to the same fashion everywhere, but is different in 
different places. The art of medicine among them is dis- 
tributed thus: — each physician is a physician of one disease 
and of no more; and the whole country is full of physicians, 
for some profess themselves to be physicians of the eyes, 
others of the head, others of the teeth, others of the affec- 
tions of the stomach, and others of the more obscure ail- 

Their fashions of mourning and of burial are these: — 
Whenever any household has lost a man who is of any regard 
amongst them, the whole number of women of that house 
forthwith plaster over their heads or even their faces with 
mud. Then leaving the corpse within the house they go 
themselves to and fro about the city and beat themselves, 
with their garments bound up by a girdle and their breasts 
exposed, and with them go all the women who are related to 
the dead man, and on the other side the men beat themselves, 
they too having their garments bound up by a girdle; and 
when they have done this, they then convey the body to the 
embalming. In this occupation certain persons employ them- 
selves regularly and inherit this as a craft. These, whenever 


a corpse is conveyed to them, show to those who brought it 
wooden models of corpses made like reality by painting, and 
the best of the ways of embalming they say is that of him 
whose name I think it impiety to mention when speaking 
of a matter of such a kind; the second which they show is 
less good than this and also less expensive ; and the third is 
the least expensive of all. Having told them about this, they 
inquire of them in which way they desire the corpse of their 
friend to be prepared. Then they after they have agreed 
for a certain price depart out of the way, and the others 
being left behind in the buildings embalm according to the 
best of these ways thus : — First with a crooked iron tool 
they draw out the brain through the nostrils, extracting it 
partly thus and partly by pouring in drugs; and after this 
with a sharp stone of Ethiopia they make a cut along the 
side and take out the whole contents of the belly, and when 
they have cleared out the cavity and cleansed it with palm- 
wine they cleanse it again with spices pounded up : then they 
fill the belly with pure myrrh pounded up and with cassia and 
other spices except frankincense, and sew it together again. 
Having so done they keep it for embalming covered up in 
natron for seventy days, but for a longer time than this 
it is not permitted to embalm it ; and when the seventy days 
are past, they wash the corpse and roll its whole body up in 
fine linen cut into bands, smearing these beneath with gum, 
which the Egyptians use generally instead of glue. Then 
the kinsfolk receive it from them and have a wooden figure 
made in the shape of a man, and when they have had this 
made they enclose the corpse, and having shut it up within, 
they store it then in a sepulchral chamber, setting it to stand 
upright against the wall. Thus they deal with the corpses 
which are prepared in the most costly way ; but for those who 
desire the middle way and wish to avoid great cost they 
prepare the corpse as follows: — having filled their syringes 
with the oil which is got from cedar-wood, with this they 
forthwith fill the belly of the corpse, and this they do without 
having either cut it open or taken out the bowels, but they 
inject the oil by the breech, and having stopped the drench 
from returning back they keep it then the appointed number 
of days for embalming, and on the last of the days they let 


the cedar oil come out from the belly, which they before put 
in; and it has such power that it brings out with it the 
bowels and interior organs of the body dissolved; and the 
natron dissolves the flesh, so that there is left of the corpse 
only the skin and the bones. When they have done this they 
give back the corpse at once in that condition without work- 
ing upon it any more. The third kind of embalming, by 
which are prepared the bodies of those who have less means, 
is as follows: — they cleanse out the belly with a purge and 
then keep the body for embalming during the seventy days, 
and at once after that they give it back to the bringers to 
carry away. The wives of men of rank when they die are 
not given at once to be embalmed, nor such women as are 
very beautiful or of greater regard than others, but on the 
third or fourth day after their death (and not before) they 
are delivered to the embalmers. They do so about this mat- 
ter in order that the embalmers may not abuse their women, 
for they say that one of them was taken once doing so ta 
the corpse of a woman lately dead, and his fellow-crafts- 
man gave information. Whenever any one, either of the 
Egyptians themselves or of strangers, is found to have been 
carried off by a crocodile or brought to his death by the 
river itself, the people of any city by which he may have 
been cast up on land must embalm him and lay him out in 
the fairest way they can and bury him in a sacred burial- 
place, nor may any of his relations or friends besides touch 
him, but the priests of the Nile themselves handle the corpse 
and bury it as that of one who was something more than 

Hellenic usages they will by no means follow, and to 
speak generally they follow those of no other men whatever. 
This rule is observed by most of the Egyptians; but there 
is a large city named Chemmis in the Theban district near 
Neapolis, and in this city there is a temple of Perseus the 
son of Danae which is of a square shape, and round it grow 
date-palms: the gateway of the temple is built of stone and 
of very great size, and at the entrance of it stand two great 
statues of stone. Within this enclosure is a temple-house 
and in it stands an image of Perseus. These people of 
Chemmis say that Perseus is wont often to appear in their 


land and often within the temple, and that a sandal which 
has been worn by him is found sometimes, being in length 
two cubits, and whenever this appears all Egypt prospers. 
This they say, and they do in honour of Perseus after Hel- 
lenic fashion thus, — they hold an athletic contest, which in- 
cludes the whole list of games, and they offer in prizes cattle 
and cloaks and skins: and when I inquired why to them 
alone Perseus was wont to appear, and wherefore they were 
separated from all the other Egyptians in that they held an 
athletic contest, they said that Perseus had been born of 
their city, for Danaos and Lynkeus were men of Chemmis 
and had sailed to Hellas, and from them they traced a 
descent and came down to Perseus : and they told me that he 
had come to Egypt for the reason which the Hellenes also 
say, namely to bring from Libya the Gorgon's head, and had 
then visited them also and recognised all his kinsfolk, and 
they said that he had well learnt the name of Chemmis 
before he came to Egypt, since he had heard it from his 
mother, and that they celebrated an athletic contest for him 
by his own command. 

All these are customs practised by the Egyptians who 
dwell above the fens : and those who are settled in the fen- 
land have the same customs for the most part as the other 
Egyptians, both in other matters and also in that they live 
each with one wife only, as do the Hellenes; but for economy 
in respect of food they have invented these things besides: — 
when the river has become full and the plains have been 
flooded, there grow in the water great numbers of lilies, 
which the Egyptians call lotos; these they cut with a sickle 
and dry in the sun, and then they pound that which grows 
in the middle of the lotos and which is like the head of a 
poppy, and they make of it loaves baked with fire. The root 
also of this lotos is edible and has a rather sweet taste : it is 
round in shape and about the size of an apple. There are 
other lilies too, in flower resembling roses, which also grow 
in the river, and from them the fruit is produced in a sepa- 
rate vessel springing from the root by the side of the plant 
itself, and very nearly resembles a wasp's comb: in this there 
grow edible seeds in great numbers of the size of an olive- 
stone, and they are eaten either fresh or dried. Besides this 


they pull up from the fens the papyrus which grows every 
year, and the upper parts of it they cut off and turn to other 
uses, but that which is left below for about a cubit in length 
they eat or sell : and those who desire to have the papyrus at 
its very best bake it in an oven heated red-hot, and then 
eat it. Some too of these people live on fish alone, which 
they dry in the sun after having caught them and taken out 
the entrails, and then when they are dry, they use them for 

Fish which swim in shoals are not much produced in the 
rivers, but are bred in the lakes, and they do as follows: — 
When there comes upon them the desire to breed, they swim 
out in shoals towards the sea; and the males lead the way 
shedding forth their milt as they go, while the females, 
coming after and swallowing it up, from it become impreg- 
nated: and when they have become full of young in the sea 
they swim up back again, each shoal to its own haunts. The 
same however no longer lead the way as before, but the lead 
comes now to the females, and they leading the way in 
shoals do just as the males did, that is to say they shed forth 
their eggs by a few grains at a time, and the males coming 
after swallow them up. Now these grains are fish, and from 
the grains which survive and are not swallowed, the fish 
grow which afterwards are bred up. Now those of the fish 
which are caught as they swim out towards the sea are found 
to be rubbed on the left side of the head, but those which 
are caught as they swim up again are rubbed on the right 
side. This happens to them because as they swim down to 
the sea they keep close to the land on the left side of the 
river, and again as they swim up they keep to the same 
side, approaching and touching the bank as much as they 
can, for fear doubtless of straying from their course by 
reason of the stream. When the Nile begins to swell, the 
hollow places of the land and the depressions by the side 
of the river first begin to fill, as the water soaks through 
from the river, and so soon as they become full of water, 
at once they are all filled with little fishes ; and whence these 
are in all likelihood produced, I think that I perceive. In 
the preceding year, when the Nile goes down, the fish first 
lay eggs in the mud and then retire with the last of the 


retreating waters; and when the time comes round again, and 
the water once more comes over the land, from these eggs 
forthwith are produced the fishes of which I speak. 

Thus it is as regards the fish. And for anointing those 
of the Egyptians who dwell in the fens use oil from the 
castor-berry, which oil the Egyptians call kiki, and thus they 
do: — they sow along the banks of the rivers and pools 
these plants, which in a wild form grow of themselves in the 
land of the Hellenes ; these are sown in Egypt and produce 
berries in great quantity but of an evil smell ; and when they 
have gathered these, some cut them up and press the oil 
from them, others again roast them first and then boil them 
down and collect that which runs away from them. The oil 
is fat and not less suitable for burning than olive-oil, but it 
gives forth a disagreeable smell. Against the gnats, which 
are very abundant, they have contrived as follows : — those 
who dwell above the fen-land are helped by the towers, to 
which they ascend when they go to rest ; for the gnats by 
reason of the winds are not able to fly up high : but those 
who dwell in the fen-land have contrived another way in- 
stead of the towers, and this it is : — every man of them has 
got a casting net, with which by day he catches fish, but in 
the night he uses it for this purpose, that is to say he puts 
the casting-net round about the bed in which he sleeps, and 
then creeps in under it and goes to sleep: and the gnats, if he 
sleeps rolled up in a garment or a linen sheet, bite through 
these, but through the net they do not even attempt to bite. 

Their boats with which they carry cargoes are made of 
the thorny acacia, of which the form is very like that of the 
Kyrenian lotos, and that which exudes from it is gum. From 
this tree they cut pieces of wood about two cubits in length 
and arrange them like bricks, fastening the boat together by 
running a great number of long bolts through the two-cubit 
pieces ; and when they have thus fastened the boat together, 
they lay cross-pieces over the top, using no ribs for the 
sides ; and within they caulk the seams with papyrus. They 
make one steering-oar for it, which is passed through the 
bottom of the boat; and they have a mast of acacia and sails 
of papyrus. These boats cannot sail up the river unless 
there be a very fresh wind blowing, but are towed from the 


shore: down-stream however they travel as follows: — they 
have a door-shaped crate made of tamarisk wood and reed 
mats sewn together, and also a stone of about two talents 
weight bored Avith a hole ; and of these the boatman lets the 
crate float on in front of the boat, fastened with a rope, 
and the stone drags behind by another rope. The crate then, 
as the force of the stream presses upon it, goes on swiftly 
and draws on the baris (for so these boats are called), while 
the stone dragging after it behind and sunk deep in the 
water keeps its course straight. These boats they have in 
great numbers and some of them carry many thousands of 
talents' burden. 

When the Nile comes over the land, the cities alone are 
seen rising above the water, resembling more nearly than 
anything else the islands in the Egean Sea; for the rest of 
Egypt becomes a sea and the cities alone rise above water. 
Accordingly, whenever this happens, they pass by water not 
now by the channels of the river but over the midst of the 
plain: for example, as one sails up from Naucratis to Mem- 
phis the passage is then close by the pyramids, whereas the 
usual passage is not the same even here, but goes by the 
point of the Delta and the city of Kercasoros; while if you 
sail over the plain to Naucratis from the sea and from 
Canobos, you will go by Anthylla and the city called after 
Archander. Of these Anthylla is a city of note and is 
especially assigned to the wife of him who reigns over Έgypt, 
to supply her with sandals, (this is the case since the time 
when Eg}^t came to be under the Persians) : the other city 
seems to me to have its name from Archander the son-in-law 
of Danaos, who was the son of Phthios, the son of Achaios ; 
for it is called aie City of Archander. There might indeed 
be another Archander, but in any case the name is not 

Hith,erto my own observation and judgment and inquiry 
are the vouchers for that which I have said; but from this 
point onwards I am about to tell the history of Eg\'pt ac- 
cording to that which I heard, to which will be added also 
something of that which I have myself seen. 

Of Min, who first became king of Eg}'pt, the priests said 


that on the one hand he banked off the site of Memphis 
from the river: for the whole stream of the river used to 
flow along by the sandy mountain-range on the side of Libya, 
but Min formed by embankments that bend of the river 
which lies to the South about a hundred furlongs above 
Memphis, and thus he dried up the old stream and conducted 
the river so that it flowed in the middle between the 
mountains : and even now this bend of the Nile is by the 
Persians kept under very careful watch, that it may flow 
in the channel to which it is confined, and the bank is repaired 
every year; for if the river should break through and over- 
flow in this direction, Memphis would be in danger of being 
overwhelmed by flood. When this Min, who first became 
king, had made into dry land the part Avhich was dammed 
off, on the one hand, I say, he founded in it that city which 
is now called Memphis ; for Memphis too is in the narrow 
part of Egypt; and outside the city he dug round it on the 
North and West a lake communicating with the river, for the 
side towards the East is barred by the Nile itself. Then 
secondly he established in the city the temple of Hephaistos 
a great work and most worthy of mention. After this man 
the priests enumerated to me from a papyrus roll the names 
of other kings, three hundred and thirty in number; and 
in all these generations of men eighteen were Ethiopians, 
one was a woman, a native Egyptian, and the rest were men 
and of Egyptian race : and the name of the woman who 
reigned w^as the same as that of the Babylonian queen, 
namely Nitocris. Of her they said that desiring to take 
vengeance for her brother, whom the Egyptians had slain 
when he was their king and then, after having slain him, 
had given his kingdom to her, — desiring, I say, to take 
vengeance for him, she destroyed by craft many of the 
Egyptians. For she caused to be constructed a very large 
chamber under ground, and making as though she would 
handsel it but in her mind devising other things, she invited 
those of the Egyptians whom she kncAv to have had most part 
in the murder, and gave a great banquet. Then while they 
were feasting, she let in the river upon them by a secret con- 
duit of large size. Of her they told no more than this, except 
that, when this had been accomplished, she threw herself 


into a room full of embers, in order that she might escape 
vengeance. As for the other kings, they could tell me of no 
great works which had been produced by them, and they 
said that they had no renown except only the last of them, 
Moiris: he (they said) produced as a memorial of himself 
the gateway of the temple of Hephaistos which is turned 
towards the North Wind, and dug a lake, about which I shall 
set forth afterwards how many furlongs of circuit it has, 
and in it built pyramids of the size which I shall mention 
at the same time when I speak of the lake itself. He, they 
said, produced these works, but of the rest none produced 

Therefore passing these by I shall make mention of the 
king who came after these, whose name was Sesostris. He 
(the priests said) first of all set out with ships of war from 
the Arabian gulf and subdued those who dwelt by the shores 
of the Erythraian Sea, until as he sailed he came to a sea 
which could no further be navigated by reason of shoals : 
then secondly, after he had returned to Egypt, according• 
to the report of the priests he took a great army and marched 
over the continent, subduing every nation which stood in 
his way : and those of them whom he found valiant and fight- 
ing desperately for their freedom, in their lands he set up 
pillars which told by inscriptions his own name and the 
name of his country, and how he had subdued them by his 
power; but as to those of whose cities he obtained posses- 
sion without fighting or with ease, on their pillars he in- 
scribed words after the same tenor as he did for the nations 
which had shown themselves courageous, and in addition he 
drew upon them the hidden parts of a woman, desiring to 
signify by this that the people were cowards and effeminate. 
Thus doing he traversed the continent, until at last he 
passed over to Europe from Asia and subdued the Scythians 
and also the Thracians. These, I am of opinion, were the 
furthest people to which the Egyptian army came, for in 
their country the pillars are found to have been set up, but 
in the land beyond this they are no longer found. From 
this point he turned and began to go back; and when he 
came to the river Phasis, what happened then I cannot say 
for certain, whether the king Sesostris himself divided off a 


certain portion of his army and left the men there as settlers 
in the land, or whether some of his soldiers were wearied 
by his distant marches and remained by the river Phasis. 
For the people of Colchis are evidently Egyptian, and this I 
perceived for myself before I heard it from others. So when 
I had come to consider the matter I asked them both; and 
the Colchians had remembrance of the Egyptians more than 
the Egyptians of the Colchians; but the Egyptians said they 
believed that the Colchians were a portion of the army of 
Sesostris. That this was so I conjectured myself not only 
because they are dark-skinned and have curly hair (this of 
itself amounts to nothing, for there are other races which 
are so), but also still more because the Colchians, Egyptians, 
and Ethiopians alone of all the races of men have practised 
circumcision from the first. The Phenicians and the Syrians 
who dwell in Palestine confess themselves that they have 
learnt it from the Egyptians, and the Syrians about the river 
Thermodon and the river Parthenios, and the Macronians, 
who are their neighbours, say that they have learnt it lately 
from the Colchians. These are the only races of men who 
practise circumcision, and these evidently practise it in the 
same manner as the Egyptians. Of the Egyptians themselves 
however and the Ethiopians, I am not able to say which 
learnt from the other, for undoubtedly it is a most ancient 
custom; but that the other nations learnt it by intercourse 
with the Egyptians, this among others is to me a strong 
proof, namely that those of the Phenicians who have inter- 
course with Hellas cease to follow the example of the 
Egyptians in this matter, and do not circumcise their chil- 
dren. Now let me tell another thing about the Colchians to 
show how they resemble the Egyptians : — they alone work 
flax in the same fashion as the Egyptians, and the two 
nations are like one another in their whole manner of living 
and also in their language: now the linen of Colchis is 
called by the Hellenes Sardonic, whereas that from Egypt 
is called Egyptian. The pillars which Sesostris king of 
Egypt set up in the various countries are for the most part 
no longer to be seen extant ; but in Syria Palestine I myself 
saw them existing with the inscription upon them which 
I have mentioned and the emblem. Moreover in Ionia there 


are two figures of this man carved upon rocks, one on the 
road by which one goes from the land of Ephesos to 
Phocaia, and the other on the road from Sardis to Smyrna. 
In each place there is a figure of a man cut in the rock, of 
four cubits and a span in height, holding in his right hand a 
spear and in his left a bow and arrows, and the other equip- 
ment which he has is similar to this, for it is both Egyptian 
and Ethiopian : and from the one shoulder to the other across 
the breast runs an inscription carved in sacred Egyptian 
characters, saying thus, " This land with my shoulders I 
won for myself." But who he is and from whence, he does 
not declare in these places, though in other places he has 
declared this. Some of those who have seen these carvings 
conjecture that the figure is that of Memnon, but herein 
they are very far from the truth. 

As this Egyptian Sesostris was returning and bringing 
back many men of the nations whose lands he had subdued, 
when he came (said the priests) to Daphnai in the district of 
Pelusion on his journey home, his brother to whom Sesos- 
tris had entrusted the charge of Egypt invited him and 
with him his sons to a feast; and then he piled the house 
round with brushwood and set it on fire : and Sesostris when 
he discovered this forthwith took counsel with his wife, for 
he was bringing with him (they said) his wife also; and she 
counselled him to lay out upon the pyre two of his sons, 
which were six in number, and so to make a bridge over the 
burning mass, and that they passing over their bodies «should 
thus escape. This, they said, Sesostris did, and two of his 
sons were burnt to death in this manner, but the rest got 
away safe with their father. Then Sesostris, having re- 
turned to Egypt and having taken vengeance on his brother, 
employed the multitude which he had brought in of those 
whose lands he had subdued, as follows: — these were they 
who drew the stones which in the reign of this king were 
brought to the temple of Hephaistos, being of very great 
size; and also these were compelled to dig all the channels 
which now are in Egypt; and thus (having no such purpose) 
they caused Egypt, which before was all fit for riding and 
driving, to be no longer fit for this from thenceforth: for 
from that time forward Egypt, though it is plain land, has 


become all unfit for riding and driving, and the cause has 
been these channels, which are many and run in all direc- 
tions. But the reason why the king cut up the land was this, 
namely because those of the Egyptians who had their cities 
not on the river but in the middle of the country, being in 
want of water when the river went down from them, found 
their drink brackish because they had it from wells. For this 
reason Egypt was cut up : and they said that this king dis- 
tributed the land to all the Egyptians, giving an equal square 
portion to each man, and from this he made his revenue, 
having appointed them to pay a certain rent every year : and 
if the river should take away anything from any man's 
portion, he would come to the king and declare that which 
had happened, and the king used to send men to examine 
and to find out by measurement how much less the piece of 
land had become, in order that for the future the man might 
pay less, in proportion to the rent appointed : and I think that 
thus the art of geometry was found out and afterwards came 
into Hellas also. For as touching the sun-dial and the 
gnomon and the twelve divisions of the day, they were learnt 
by the Hellenes from the Babylonians. He moreover alone 
of all the Egyptian kings had rule over Ethiopia; and he left 
as memorials of himself in front of the temple of Hephaistos 
two stone statues of thirty cubits each, representing himself 
and his wife, and others of twenty cubits each representing 
his four sons: and long afterwards the priest of Hephaistos 
refused to permit Dareios the Persian to set up a statue of 
himself in front of them, saying that deeds had not been 
done by him equal to those which were done by Sesostris 
the Egyptian; for Sesostris had subdued other nations be- 
sides, not fewer than he, and also the Scythians ; but Dareios 
had not been able to conquer the Scythians : wherefore it was 
not just that he should set up a statue in front of those which 
Sesostris had dedicated, if he did not surpass him in his 
deeds. Which speech, they say, Dareios took in good part. 
Now after Sesostris had brought his life to an end, his 
son Pheros, they told me, received in succession the king- 
dom, and he made no warlike expedition, and moreover 
it chanced to him to become blind by reason of the follow- 
ing accident : — when the river had come down in flood rising 


to a height of eighteen cubits, higher than ever before that 
time, and had gone over the fields, a wind fell upon it and 
the river became agitated by waves : and this king (they say) 
moved by presumptuous folly took a spear and cast it into 
the midst of the eddies of the stream ; and immediately 
upon this he had a disease of the eyes and was by it made 
blind. For ten years then he was blind, and in the eleventh 
year there came to him an oracle from the city of Buto, 
saying that the time of his punishment had expired, and 
that he should see again if he washed his eyes with the water 
of a woman who had accompanied with her own husband 
only and had not had knowledge of other men : and first he 
made trial of his own wife, and then, as he continued blind, 
he went on to try all the women in turn ; and when he had 
at last regained his sight he gathered together all the women 
of whom he had made trial, excepting her by whose means 
he had regained his sight, to one city which now is named 
Erythrabolos, and having gathered them to this he con- 
sumed them all by fire, as well as the city itself; but as for 
her by whose means he had regained his sight, he had her 
himself to wife. Then after he had escaped the malady of 
his eyes he dedicated offerings at each one of the temples 
which were of renown, and especially (to mention only that 
which is most worthy of mention) he dedicated at the temple 
of the Sun works which are worth seeing, namely two 
obelisks of stone, each of a single block, measuring in length 
a hundred cubits each one and in breadth eight cubits. 

After him, they said, there succeeded to the throne a man 
of Memphis, whose name in the tongue of the Hellenes was 
Proteus ; for whom there is now a sacred enclosure at Mem- 
phis, very fair and well ordered, lying on that side of the 
temple of Hephaistos Avhich faces the North Wind. Round 
about this enclosure dwell Phenicians of Tyre, and this whole 
region is called the Camp of the Tyrians. Within the en- 
closure of Proteus there is a temple called the temple of the 
" foreign Aphrodite," which temple I conjecture to be one 
of Helen the daughter of Tyndareus, not only because I 
have heard the tale how Helen dwelt with Proteus, but also 
especially because it is called by the name of the " foreign 
Aphrodite," for the other temples of Aphrodite which there 


are have none of them the addition of the word " foreign " 
to the name. 

And the priests told me, when I inquired, that the things 
concerning Helen happened thus : — Alexander having car- 
ried off Helen was sailing away from Sparta to his own 
land, and when he had come to the Egean Sea contrary- 
winds drove him from his course to the Sea of Egypt; and 
after that, since the blasts did not cease to blow, he came 
to Egypt itself, and in Egypt to that which is now named 
the Canobic mouth of the Nile and to Taricheiai. Now 
there was upon the shore, as still there is now, a temple of 
Heracles, in which if any man's slave take refuge and have 
the sacred marks set upon him, giving himself over to the 
god, it is not lawful to lay hands upon him ; and this custom 
has continued still unchanged from the beginning down to 
my own time. Accordingly the attendants of Alexandria, 
having heard of the custom which existed about the temple, 
ran away from him, and sitting down as suppliants of the 
god, accused Alexander, because they desired to do him 
hurt, telling the whole tale how things were about Helen and 
about the wrong done to Menelaos ; and this accusation they 
made not only to the priests but also to the warden of this 
river-mouth, whose name was Thonis. Thonis then having 
heard their tale sent forthwith a message to Proteus at 
Memphis, which said as follows : " There hath come a 
stranger, a Teucrian by race, who hath done in Hellas an 
unholy deed ; for he hath deceived the wife of his own host, 
and is come hither bringing with him this woman herself and 
very much wealth, having been carried out of his way by 
winds to thy land. Shall we then allow him to sail out un- 
harmed, or shall we first take away from him that which he 
brought with him?" In reply to this Proteus sent back a 
messenger who said thus : " Seize this man, whosoever he may 
be, who has done impiety to his own host, and bring him away 
into my presence, that I may know what he Avill find to say." 
Hearing this, Thonis seized Alexander and detained his ships, 
and after that he brought the man himself up to Memphis 
and with him Helen and the wealth he had, and also in ad- 
dition to them the suppliants. So when all had been con- 
veyed up thither, Proteus began to ask Alexander who he was 


and from whence he was voyaging; and he both recounted 
to him his descent and told him the name of his native 
land, and moreover related of his voyage, from Avhence he 
was sailing. After this Proteus asked him whence he had taken 
Helen; and when Alexander went astray in his account and 
did not speak the truth, those who had become suppliants 
convicted him of falsehood, relating in full the whole tale of 
the wrong done. At length Proteus declared to them this 
sentence, saying, " Were it not that I count it a matter of 
great moment not to slay any of those strangers who being 
driven from their course by winds have come to my land 
hitherto, I should have taken vengeance on thee on behalf 
of the man of Hellas, seeing that thou, most base of men, 
having received from him hospitality, didst work against 
him a most impious deed. For thou didst go in to the wife 
of thine own host; and even this was not enough for thee, 
but thou didst stir her up Λvith desire and hast gone away 
with her like a thief. Moreover not even this by itself was 
enough for thee, but thou art come hither with plunder 
taken from the house of thy host. Now therefore depart, 
seeing that I have counted it of great moment not to be a 
slayer of strangers. This woman indeed and the wealth 
which thou hast I will not allow thee to carry away, but I 
shall keep them safe for the Hellene who was thy host, un- 
til he come himself and desire to carry them off to his home ; 
to thyself however and thy fellow-voyagers I proclaim that 
ye depart from your anchoring within three days and go 
from my land to some other; and if not, that ye will be dealt 
with as enemies." 

This the priests said was the manner of Helen's coming 
to Proteus; and I suppose that Homer also had heard this 
story, but since it was not so suitable to the composition of 
his poem as the other which he followed, he dismissed it 
finally, making it clear at the same time that he was ac- 
quainted with that story also: and according to the manner 
in which he described the wanderings of Alexander in the 
Iliad (nor did he elsewhere retract that which he had said) 
it is clear that when he brought Helen he was carried out 
of his course, wandering to various lands, and that he came 
among other places to Sidon in Phenicia. Of this the poet 


has made mention in the " prowess of Diomede," and the 
verses run thus : 

" There she had robes many-coloured, the works of women of Sidon, 
Those whom her son himself the god-like of form Alexander 
Carried from Sidon, what time the broad sea-path he sailed over 
Bringing back Helene home, of a noble father begotten." 

And in the Odyssey also he has made mention of it in these 
verses : 

" Such had the daughter of Zeus, such drugs of exquisite cunning. 
Good, which to her the wife of Thon, Polydamna, had given, 
Dwelling in Egypt, the land where the bountiful meadow produces 
Drugs more than all lands else, many good being mixed, many evil." 

And thus too Menelaos says to Telemachos : 

" Still the gods stayed me in Egypt, to come back hither desiring, 
Stayed me from voyaging home, since sacrifice due I performed 

In these lines he makes it clear that he knew of the wander- 
ing of Alexander to Egypt, for Syria borders upon Egypt and 
the Phenicians, of whom is Sidon, dwell in Syria. By these 
lines and by this passage it is also most clearly shown that 
the " Cyprian Epic " was not written by Homer but by some 
other man : for in this it is said that on the third day after 
leaving Sparta Alexander came to Ilion bringing with him 
Helen, having had a " gently-blowing wind and a smooth 
sea," whereas in the Iliad it says that he wandered from his 
course when he brought her. 

Let us now leave Homer and the " Cyprian Epic " ; but 
this I will say, namely that I asked the priests whether it 
is but an idle tale which the Hellenes tell of that Λvhich they 
say happened about Ilion ; and they answered me thus, saying 
that they had their knowledge by inquiries from Menelaos 
himself. After the rape of Helen there came indeed, they 
said, to the Teucrian land a large army of Hellenes to help 
Menelaos; and when the army had come out of the ships to 
land and had pitched its camp there, they sent messengers to 
Ilion, with whom went also Menelaos himself; and when 
these entered within the Avail they demanded back Helen 
and the wealth which Alexander had stolen from Menelaos 


and had taken away; and moreover they demanded satis- 
faction for the wrongs done: and the Teucrians told the 
same tale then and afterwards, both with oath and without 
oath, namely that in deed and in truth they had not Helen 
nor the wealth for which demand was made, but that both 
were in Egypt; and that they could not justly be compelled 
to give satisfaction for that which Proteus the king of 
Egypt had. The Hellenes however thought that they were 
being mocked by them and besieged the city, until at last 
they took it; and when they had taken the wall and did not 
find Helen, but heard the same tale as before, then they be- 
lieved the former tale and sent Menelaos himself to Proteus. 
And Menelaos haAang come to Egypt and having sailed up 
to Memphis, told the truth of these matters, and not only 
found great entertainment, but also received Helen unhurt, 
and all his own wealth besides. Then, however, after he had 
been thus dealt with, Menelaos showed himself ungrateful 
to the Egyptians; for when he set forth to sail away, con- 
trary winds detained him, and as this condition of things 
lasted long, he devised an impious deed; for he took two 
children of natives and made sacrifice of them. After this, 
when it was known that he had done so, he became ab- 
horred, and being pursued he escaped and got away in his 
ships to Libya; but whither he went besides after this, the 
Egyptians were not able to tell. Of these things they said 
that they found out part by inquiries, and the rest, namely 
that which happened in their own land, they related from 
sure and certain knowledge. 

Thus the priests of the Egyptians told me; and I myself 
also agree with the story which was told of Helen, adding 
this consideration, namely that if Helen had been in Ilion 
she would have been given up to the Hellenes, whether 
Alexander consented or no; for Priam assuredly was not 
so mad, nor yet the others of his house, that they were desir- 
ous to run risk of ruin for themselves and their children 
and their city, in order that Alexander might have Helen 
as his wife: and even supposing that during the first part 
of the time they had been so inclined, yet when many others 
of the Trojans besides were losing their lives as often as 
they fought with the Hellenes, and of the sons of Priam 


himself always two or three or even more were slain 
when a battle took place (if one may trust at all to the 
Epic poets), — when, I say, things were coming thus to pass, 
I consider that even if Priam himself had had Helen as his 
wife, he \vould have given her back to the Achaians, if 
at least by so doing he might be freed from the evils 
which oppressed him. Nor even was the kingdom coming 
to Alexander next, so that when Priam was old the govern- 
ment was in his hands; but Hector, who was both older 
and more of a man than he, would certainly have received 
it after the death of Priam ; and him it behoved not to allow 
his brother to go on with his wrong-doing, considering that 
great evils were coming to pass on his account both to him- 
self privately and in general to the other Trojans. In truth 
however they lacked the power to give Helen back; and the 
Hellenes did not believe them, though they spoke the truth; 
because, as I declare my opinion, the divine power was 
purposing to cause them utterly to perish, and so make 
it evident to men that for great wrongs great also are the 
chastisements which come from the gods. And thus have 
I delivered my opinion concerning these matters. 

After Proteus, they told me, Rhampsinitos received in 
succession the kingdom, who left as a memorial of himself 
that gateway to the temple of Hephaistos which is turned 
towards the West, and in front of the gateway he set up 
two statues, in height five-and-twenty cubits, of which the 
one which stands on the North side is called by the Egyp- 
tians Summer and the one on the South side Winter; and 
to that one which they call Summer they do reverence and 
make offerings, while to the other which is called Winter 
they do the opposite of these things. This king, they said, 
got great wealth of silver, which none of the kings born 
after him could surpass or even come near to ; and wishing 
to store his wealth in safety he caused to be built a chamber 
of stone, one of the walls whereof was towards the out- 
side of his palace: and the builder of this, having a design 
against it, contrived as follows, that is, he disposed one of 
the stones in such a manner that it could be taken out 
easily from the Avail either by two men or even by one. 
So when the chamber was finished, the king stored his 


money in it, and after some time the builder, being near 
the end of his life, called to him his sons (for he had two) 
and to them he related how he had contrived in building 
the treasury of the king, and all in forethought for them, 
that they might have ample means of living. And when 
he had clearly set forth to them everything concerning the 
taking out of the stone, he gave them the measurements, 
saying that if they paid heed to this matter they would 
be stewards of the king's treasury. So he ended his life, 
and his sons made no long delay in setting to work, but 
went to the palace by night, and having found the stone in 
the wall of the chamber they dealt with it easily and carried 
forth for themselves great quantity of the wealth within. 
And the king happening to open the chamber, he marvelled 
when he saw the vessels falling short of the full amount, 
and he did not know on whom he should lay the blame, 
since the seals were unbroken and the chamber had been 
close shut ; but when upon his opening the chamber a second 
and a third time the money was each time seen to be 
diminished, for the thieves did not slacken in their assaults 
upon it, he did as follows : — having ordered traps to be 
made he set these round about the vessels in which the 
money was ; and when the thieves had come as at former 
times and one of them had entered, then so soon as he came 
near to one of the vessels he was straightway caught in the 
trap: and when he perceived in what evil case he was, 
straightway calling his brother he showed him what the 
matter was, and bade him enter as quickly as possible and 
cut off his head, for fear lest being seen and known he might 
bring about the destruction of his brother also. And to the 
other it seemed that he spoke well, and he Avas persuaded 
and did so ; and fitting the stone into its place he departed 
home bearing with him the head of his brother. Now 
when it became day, the king entered into the chamber and 
was very greatly amazed, seeing the body of the thief held 
in the trap without his head, and the chamber unbroken, 
with no way to come in by or go out : and being at a loss 
he hung up the dead body of the thief upon the wall and 
set guards there, with charge if they saw any one weeping 
or bewailing himself to seize him and bring him before the 


king. And when the dead body had been hung up, the 
mother was greatly grieved, and speaking with the son who 
survived she enjoined him, in whatever way he could, to 
contrive means by which he might take down and bring 
home the body of his brother; and if he should neglect to 
do this, she earnestly threatened that she would go and give 
information to the king that he had the money. So as the 
mother dealt hardly with the surviving son, and he though 
saying many things to her did not persuade her, he con- 
trived for his purpose a device as follows : — Providing him- 
self with asses he filled some skins with wine and laid them 
upon the asses, and after that he drove them along: and 
when he came opposite to those who were guarding the 
corpse hung up, he drew towards him two or three of the 
necks of the skins and loosened the cords with which they 
were tied. Then when the wine was running out, he began 
to beat his head and cry out loudly, as if he did not know 
to which of the asses he should first turn; and when the 
guards saw the wine flowing out in streams, they ran to- 
gether to the road with drinking vessels in their hands and 
collected the wine that was poured out, counting it so much 
gain ; and he abused them all violently, making as if he 
were angry, but when the guards tried to appease him, after 
a time he feigned to be pacified and to abate his anger, and 
at length he drove his asses out of the road and began to 
set their loads right. Then more talk arose among them, 
and one or two of them made jests at him and brought him 
to laugh with them ; and in the end he made them a present 
of one of the skins in addition to what they had. Upon that 
they lay down there without more ado, being minded to 
drink, and they took him into their company and invited 
him to remain with them and join them in their drinking: 
so he (as may be supposed) was persuaded and stayed. 
Then as they in their drinking bade him welcome in a friendly 
manner, he made a present to them also of another of the 
skins; and so at length having drunk liberally the guards 
became completely intoxicated; and being overcome by 
sleep they went to bed on the spot where they had been 
drinking. He then, as it was now far on in the night, 
first took down the body of his brother, and then in mockery 


shaved the right cheeks of all the guards; and after that he 
put the dead body upon the asses and drove them away- 
home, having accomplished that which was enjoined him 
by his mother. Upon this the king, when it was reported to 
him that the dead body of the thief had been stolen away, 
displayed great anger; and desiring by all means that it 
should be found out who it might be who devised these 
things, did this (so at least they said, but I do not believe 
the account), — he caused his own daughter to sit in the 
stews, and enjoined her to receive all equally, and before 
having commerce with any one to compel him to tell her 
what was the most cunning and what the most unholy deed 
which had been done by him in all hislife-time; and whosoever 
should relate that which had happened about the thief, him 
she must seize and not let him go out. Then as she was 
doing that which was enjoined by her father, the thief, 
hearing for what purpose this was done and having a desire 
to get the better of the king in resource, did thus : — from 
the body of one lately dead he cut off the arm at the shoulder 
and went with it under his mantle : and having gone in to 
the daughter of the king, and being asked that which the 
others also were asked, he related that he had done the 
most unholy deed when he cut off the head of his brother, 
who had been caught in a trap in the king's treasure-cham- 
ber, and the most cunning deed in that he made drunk the 
guards and took down the dead body of his brother hanging 
up; and she Avhen she heard it tried to take hold of him, but 
the thief held out to her in the darkness the arm of the 
corpse, which she grasped and held, thinking that she was 
holding the arm of the man himself; but the thief left it in 
her hands and departed, escaping through the door. Now 
when this also was reported to the king, he was at first 
amazed at the ready invention and daring of the fellow, and 
then afterwards he sent round to all the cities and made 
proclamation granting a free pardon to the thief, and also 
promising a great reward if he would come into his presence. 
The thief accordingly trusting to the proclamation came to 
the king, and Rhampsinitos greatly marvelled at him, and 
gave him this daughter of his to wife, counting him to be 
the most knowing of all men; for as the Egyptians were 


distinguished from all other men, so was he from the other 

After these things they said this king went down alive 
to that place which by the Hellenes is called Hades, and 
there played at dice with Demeter, and in some throws 
he overcame her and in others he was overcome by her; 
and he came back again having as a gift from her a hand- 
kerchief of gold: and they told me that because of the 
going down of Rhampsinitos the Egyptians after he came 
back celebrated a feast, which I know of my own knowl- 
edge also that they still observe even to my time; but 
whether it is for this cause that they keep the feast or 
for some other, I am not able to say. However, the priests 
weave a robe completely on the very day of the feast, 
and forthwith they bind up the eyes of one of them with 
a fillet, and having led him with the robe to the way by 
which one goes to the temple of Demeter, they depart 
back again themselves. This priest, they say, with his 
eyes bound up is led by two wolves to the temple of De- 
meter, which is distant from the city twenty furlongs, and 
then afterwards the wolves lead him back again from the 
temple to the same spot. Now as to the tales told by the 
Egyptians, any man may accept them to whom such things 
appear credible; as for me, it is to be understood throughout 
the whole of the history that I write by hearsay that which 
is reported by the people in each place. The Egyptians say 
that Demeter and Dionysos are rulers of the world below ; 
and the Egyptians are also the first who reported the doctrine 
that the soul of man is immortal, and that when the body 
dies, the soul enters into another creature which chances 
then to be coming to the birth, and when it has gone 
the round of all the creatures of land and sea and of the 
air, it enters again into a human body as it comes to the 
birth ; and that it makes this round in a period of three 
thousand years. This doctrine certain Hellenes adopted, 
some earlier and some later, as if it were of their own 
invention, and of these men I know the names but I abstain 
from recording them. 

Down to the time when Rhampsinitos was king, they 
told me there was in Egypt nothing but orderly rule, and 


Egypt prospered greatly ; but after him Cheops became king 
over them and brought them to every kind of evil : for he 
shut up all the temples, and having first kept them from 
sacrifices there, he then bade all the Egyptians work for 
him. So some were appointed to draw stones from the 
stone-quarries in the Arabian mountains to the Nile, and 
others he ordered to receive the stones after they had been 
carried over the river in boats, and to draw them to those 
which are called the Libyan mountains ; and they worked 
by a hundred thousand men at a time, for each three months 
continually. Of this oppression there passed ten years while 
the causeway was made by which they drew the stones, 
which causeway they built, and it is a work not much less, 
as it appears to me, than the pyramid; for the length of it 
is five furlongs and the breadth ten fathoms and the height, 
where it is highest, eight fathoms, and it is made of stone 
smoothed and with figures carved upon it. For this they 
said, the ten years were spent, and for the underground 
chambers on the hill upon which the pyramids stand, which 
he caused to be made as sepulchral chambers for himself in 
an island, having conducted thither a channel from the Nile. 
For the making of the pyramid itself there passed a period of 
twenty years ; and the pryamid is square, each side measuring 
eight hundred feet, and the height of it is the same. It is 
built of stone smoothed and fitted together in the most per- 
fect manner, not one of the stones being less than thirty feet 
in length. This pyramid was made after the manner of steps, 
which some called " rows " and others " bases " : and when 
they had first made it thus, they raised the remaining stones 
with machines made of short pieces of timber, raising them first 
from the ground to the first stage of the steps, and when the 
stone got up to this it was placed upon another machine stand- 
ing on the first stage, and so from this it was drawn to the 
second upon another machine ; for as many as were the courses 
of the steps, so many machines there were also, or perhaps 
they transferred one and the same machine, made so as 
easily to be carried, to each stage successively, in order that 
they might take up the stones; for let it be told in both 
ways, according as it is reported. However that may be, 
the highest parts of it were finished first, and afterwards 


they proceeded to finish that which came next to them, and 
lastly they finished the parts of it near the ground and the 
lowest ranges. On the pyramid it is declared in Egyptian 
writing how much was spent on radishes and onions and 
leeks for the workmen, and if I rightly remember that which 
the interpreter said in reading to me this inscription, a sum 
of one thousand six hundred talents of silver was spent; 
and if this is so, how much besides is likely to have been ex- 
pended upon the iron with which they worked, and upon 
bread and clothing for the workmen, seeing that they were 
building the works for the time which has been mentioned 
and were occupied for no small time besides, as I suppose, 
in the cutting and bringing of the stones and in working at 
the excavation under the ground? Cheops moreover came, 
they said, to such a pitch of wickedness, that being in want 
of money he caused his own daughter to sit in the stews, and 
ordered her to obtain from those who came a certain amount 
of money (how much it was they did not tell me) ; and she 
not only obtained the sum appointed by her father, but also 
she formed a design for herself privately to leave behind 
her a memorial, and she requested each man who came in to 
her to give her one stone upon her building: and of these 
stones, they told me, the pyramid was built which stands in 
front of the great pyramid in the middle of the three, each 
side being one hundred and fifty feet in length. 
' This Cheops, the Egyptians said, reigned fifty years; and 
after he was dead his brother Chephren succeeded to the 
kingdom. This king followed the same manner of dealing 
as the other, both in all the rest and also in that he made a 
pyramid, not indeed attaining to the measurements of that 
which was built by the former (this I know, having myself 
also measured it), and moreover there are no underground 
chambers beneath nor does a channel come from the Nile 
flowing to this one as to the other, in which the water com- 
ing through a conduit built for it flows round an island 
within, where they say that Cheops himself is laid: but for 
a basement he built the first course of Ethiopian stone of 
divers colours ; and this pyramid he made forty feet lower 
than the other as regards size, building it close to the great 
pyramid. These stand both upon the same hill, which is 

HC— Vol. 33 (3) 


about a hundred feet high. And Chephren tney said reigned 
fifty and six years. Here then they reckon one hundred and 
six years, during which they say that there was nothing but 
evil for the Egyptians, and the temples were kept closed and 
not opened during all that time. These kings the Egyptians 
by reason of their hatred of them are not very willing to 
name; nay, they even call the pyramids after the name of 
Philitis the shepherd, who at that time pastured flocks in 
those regions. After him, they said, Mykerinos became 
king over Egypt, who was the son of Cheops; and to him 
his father's deeds were displeasing, and he both opened the 
temples and gave liberty to the people, who were ground 
down to the last extremity of evil, to return to their own 
business and to their sacrifices: also he gave decisions of 
their causes juster than those of all the other kings besides. 
In regard to this then they commend this king more that! 
all the other kings who had arisen in Egypt before him; for 
he not only gave good decisions, but also when a man com• 
plained of the decision, he gave him recompense from his 
own goods and thus satisfied his desire. But while Myker- 
inos was acting mercifully to his subjects and practising 
this conduct which has been said, calamities befell him, of 
which the first was this, namely that his daughter died, the 
only child whom he had in his house : and being above 
measure grieved by that which had befallen him, and de- 
siring to bury his daughter in a manner more remarkable 
than others, he made a cow of wood, which he covered over 
with gold, and then within it he buried this daughter who, 
as I said, had died. This cow Λν38 not covered up in the 
ground, but it might be seen even down to my own time in 
the city of Sais, placed within the royal palace in a chamber 
which was greatly adorned; and they offer incense of all 
kinds before it every day, and each night a lamp burns be- 
side it all through the night. Near this cow in another 
chamber stand images of the concubines of Mykerinos, as 
the priests at Sais told me; for there are in fact colossal 
wooden statues, in number about twenty, made with naked 
bodies; but who they are I am not able to say, except only 
that which is reported. Some however tell about this cow 
and the colossal statues the following tale, namely that 


Mykerinos was enamoured of his own daughter and after- 
wards ravished her; and upon this they say that the girl 
strangled herself for grief, and he buried her in this cow; 
and her mother cut off the hands of the maids who had 
betrayed the daughter to her father; wherefore now the 
images of them have suffered that which the maids suffered 
in their life. In thus saying they speak idly, as it seems to 
me, especially in what they say about the hands of the 
statues; for as to this, even we ourselves saw that their 
hands had dropped off from lapse of time, and they were to 
be seen still lying at their feet even down to my time. The 
cow is covered up with a crimson robe, except only the head 
and the neck, which are seen, overlaid with gold very thickly; 
and between the horns there is the disc of the sun figured in 
gold. The cow is not standing up but kneeling, and in size 
it is equal to a large living cow. Every year it is carried 
forth from the chamber, at those times, I say, the Egyptians 
beat themselves for that god whom I will not name upon 
occasion of such a matter; at these times, I say, they also 
carry forth the cow to the light of day, for they say that she 
asked of her father Mykerinos, when she was dying, that 
she might look upon the sun once in the year. 

After the misfortune of his daughter it happened, they 
said, secondly to this king as follows: — An oracle came to 
him from the city of Buto, saying that he was destined to 
live but six years more, in the seventh year to end his life: 
and he being indignant at it sent to the Oracle a reproach 
against the god, making complaint in reply that whereas his 
father and uncle, who had shut up the temples and had not 
only not remembered the gods, but also had been destroyers of 
men, had lived for a long time, he himself, who practised 
piety, was destined to end his life so soon: and from the 
Oracle there came a second message, which said that it was 
for this very cause that he was bringing his life to a swift 
close; for he had not done that which it was appointed for 
him to do, since it was destined that Egypt should suffer evils 
for a hundred and fifty years, and the two kings who had 
arisen before him had perceived this, but he had not. Myk- 
erinos having heard this, and considering that this sentence 
had passed upon him beyond recall, procured many lamps. 


and whenever night came on he lighted these and began to 
drink and take his pleasure, ceasing neither by day nor by 
night; and he went about to the fen-country and to the 
woods and wherever he heard there were the most suitable 
places of enjoyment. This he devised (having a mind to 
prove that the Oracle spoke falsely) in order that he might 
have twelve years of life instead of six, the nights being 
turned into days. 

This king also left behind him a pyramid, much smaller 
than that of his father, of a square shape and measuring on 
each side three hundred feet lacking twenty, built moreover 
of Ethiopian stone up to half the height. This pyramid 
some of the Hellenes say was built by the courtesan Rhod- 
opis, not therein speaking rightly : and besides this it is 
evident to me that they who speak thus do not even know 
who Rhodopis was, for otherwise they would not have 
attributed to her the building of a pyramid like this, on 
which have been spent (so to speak) innumerable thousands 
of talents : moreover they do not know that Rhodopis flour- 
ished in the reign of Amasis, and not in this king's reign; 
for Rhodopis lived very many years later than the kings 
who left behind them these pyramids. By descent she was 
of Thrace, and she was a slave of ladmon the son of 
Hephaistopolis a Samian, and a fellow-slave of Esop the 
maker of fables; for he too was once the slave of ladmon, as 
was proved especially by this fact, namely that when the 
people of Delphi repeatedly made proclamation in accord- 
ance with an oracle, to find some one who would take up the 
blood-money for the death of Esop, no one else appeared, 
but at length the grandson of ladmon, called ladmon also, 
took it up; and thus it is shown that Esop too was the slave 
of ladmon. As for Rhodopis, she came to Egypt brought 
by Xanthes the Samian, and having come thither to exercise 
her calling she was redeemed from slavery for a great sum 
by a man of Mytilene, Charaxos son of Scamandronymos 
and brother of Sappho the lyric poet. Thus was Rhodopis 
set free, and she remained in Egypt and by her beauty won 
so much liking that she made great gain of money for one 
like Rhodopis, though not enough to suffice for the cost of 
such a pyramid as this. In truth there is no need to ascribe 


to her very great riches, considering that the tithe of her 
wealth may still be seen even to this time by any one who 
desires it : for Rhodopis wished to leave behind her a me- 
morial of herself in Hellas, namely to cause a thing to be 
made such as happens not to have been thought of or dedi- 
cated in a temple by any besides, and to dedicate this at 
Delphi as a memorial of herself. Accordingly with the tithe 
of her wealth she caused to be made spits of iron of size 
large enough to pierce a whole ox, and many in number, 
going as far therein as her tithe allowed her, and she sent 
them to Delphi : these are even at the present time lying 
there, heaped all together behind the altar which the Chians 
dedicated, and just opposite to the cell of the temple. Now 
at Naucratis, as it happens, the courtesans are rather apt to 
win credit; for this woman first, about whom the story to 
which I refer is told, became so famous that all the Hellenes 
without exception came to know the name of Rhodopis, and 
then after her one whose name was Archidiche became a 
subject of song all over Hellas, though she was less talked 
of than the other. As for Charaxos, when after redeeming 
Rhodopis he returned back to Mytilene, Sappho in an ode 
violently abused him. Of Rhodopis then I shall say no more. 
After Mykerinos the priests said Asychis became king of 
Egypt, and he made for Hephaistos the temple gateway 
which is towards the sunrising, by far the most beautiful 
and the largest of the gateways ; for while they all have 
figures carved upon them and innumerable ornaments of 
building besides, this has them very much more than the rest. 
In this king's reign they told me that, as the circulation of 
money was very slow, a law was made for the Egyptians 
that a man might have that money lent to him which he 
needed, by offering as security the dead body of his father; 
and there was added moreover to this law another, namely 
that he who lent the money should have a claim also to the 
whole of the sepulchral chamber belonging to him who re- 
ceived it, and that the man who offered that security should 
be subject to this penalty, if he refused to pay back the 
debt, namely that neither the man himself should be allowed 
to have burial, when he died, either in that family burial- 
place or in any other, nor should he be allowed to bury any 


of his kinsmen whom he lost by death. This king desiring 
to surpass the kings of Egypt who had arisen before him left 
as a memorial of himself a pyramid which he made of bricks, 
and on it there is an inscription carved in stone and saying 
thus : " Despise not me in comparison with the pyramids of 
stone, seeing that I excel them as much as Zeus excels the 
other gods; for with a pole they struck into the lake, and 
whatever of the mud attached itself to the pole, this they 
gathered up and made bricks, and in such manner they 
finished me." 

Such were the deeds which this king performed : and after 
him reigned a blind man of the city of Anysis, whose name 
was Anysis. In his reign the Ethiopians and Sabac5s the 
king of the Ethiopians marched upon Egypt Avith a great 
host of men; so this blind man departed, flying to the fen- 
country, and the Ethiopian was king over Egypt for fifty 
years, during which he performed deeds as follows : — 
whenever any man of the Egyptians committed any trans- 
gression, he would never put him to death, but he gave sen- 
tence upon each man according to the greatness of the 
wrong-doing, appointing them to work at throwing up an 
embankment before that city from whence each man came 
of those who committed wrong. Thus the cities were made 
higher still than before; for they were embanked first by 
those who dug the channels in the reign of Sesostris, and then 
secondly in the reign of the Ethiopian, and thus they were 
made very high: and while other cities in Egypt also stood 
high, I think in the town at Bubastis especially the earth was 
piled up. In this city there is a temple very well worthy of 
mention, for though there are other temples which are larger 
and built with more cost, none more than this is a pleasure 
to the eyes. Now Bubastis in the Hellenic tongue is 
Artemis, and her temple is ordered thus: — Except the en- 
trance it is completely surrounded by water; for channels 
come in from the Nile, not joining one another, but each 
extending as far as the entrance of the temple, one flowing 
round on the one side and the other on the other side, each 
a hundred feet broad and shaded over with trees; and the 
gateway has a height of ten fathoms, and it is adorned with 
figures six cubits high, very noteworthy. This temple is in 


the middle of the city and is looked down upon from all 
sides as one goes round, for since the city has been banked 
up to a height, while the temple has not been moved from 
the place where it was at the first built, it is possible to look 
down into it: and round it runs a stone wall with figures 
carved upon it, while within it there is a grove of very large 
trees planted round a large temple-house, within which is 
the image of the goddess: and the breadth and length of the 
temple is a furlong every way. Opposite the entrance there 
is a road paved with stone for about three furlongs, which 
leads through the market-place towards the East, with a 
breadth of about four hundred feet; and on this side and on 
that grow trees of height reaching to heaven : and the road 
leads to the temple of Hermes. This temple then is thus 

The final deliverance from the Ethiopian came about (they 
said) as follows: — he fled away because he had seen in his 
sleep a vision, in which it seemed to him that a man came 
and stood by him and counselled him to gather together all 
the priests in Egypt and cut them asunder in the midst. 
Having seen this dream, he said that it seemed to him that 
the gods were foreshowing him this to furnish an occasion 
against him, in order that he might do an impious deed with 
respect to religion, and so receive some evil either from the 
gods or from men : he would not however do so, but in truth 
(he said) the time had expired, during which it had been 
prophesied to him that he should rule Egypt before he de- 
parted thence. For when he was in Ethiopia the Oracles 
which the Ethiopians consult had told him that it was fated 
for him to rule Egypt fifty years: since then this time was 
now expiring, and the vision of the dream also disturbed 
him, Sabacos departed out of Egypt of his own free will. 

Then when the Ethiopian had gone away out of Egypt, 
the blind man came back from the fen-country and began 
to rule again, having lived there during fifty year? upon an 
island which he had made by heaping up ashes and earth: 
for whenever any of the Egyptians visited him bringing 
food, according as it had been appointed to them severally 
to do without the knowledge of the Ethiopian, he bade them 
bring also some ashes for their gift. This island none was 


able to find before Amyrtaios; that is, for more than seven 
hundred years the kings who arose before Amyrtaios were 
not able to find it. Now the name of this island is Elbo, 
and its size is ten furlongs each way. 

After him there came to the throne the priest of He- 
phaistos, whose name was Seth5s. This man, they said, neg- 
lected and held in no regard the warrior class of the Egyp- 
tians, considering that he would have no need of them ; and 
besides other slights which he put upon them, he also took 
from them the yokes of corn-land which had been given to 
them as a special gift in the reigns of the former kings, 
twelve yokes to each man. After this, Sanacharib king of 
the Arabians and of the Assyrians marched a great host 
against Egypt. Then the warriors of the Egyptians refused 
to come to the rescue, and the priest, being driven into a 
strait, entered into the sanctuary of the temple and be- 
wailed to the image of the god the danger which was im- 
pending over him ; and as he was thus lamenting, sleep came 
upon him, and it seemed to him in his vision that the god 
came and stood by him and encouraged him, saying that he 
should suffer no evil if he went forth to meet the army of the 
Arabians; for he would himself send him helpers. Trust- 
ing in these things seen in sleep, he took with him, they 
said, those of the Egyptians who were willing to follow him, 
and encamped in Pelusion, for by this way the invasion 
came : and not one of the warrior class followed him, but 
shop-keepers and artisans and men of the market. Then 
after they came, there swarmed by night upon their enemies 
mice of the fields, and ate up their quivers and their bows, 
and moreover the handles of their shields, so that on the 
next day they fled, and being without defence of arms great 
numbers fell. And at the present time this king stands in 
the temple of Hephaistos in stone, holding upon his hand a 
mouse, and by letters inscribed he says these words : " Let 
him who looks upon me learn to fear the gods." 

So far in the story the Egyptians and the priests were they 
who made the report, declaring that from the first king 
down to this priest of Hephaistos who reigned last, there 
had been three hundred and forty-one generations of men, 
and that in them there had been the same number of chief- 


priests and of kings : but three hundred generations of men 
are equal to ten thousand years, for a hundred years is 
three generations of men ; and in the one-and- forty genera- 
tions which remain, those I mean which were added to the 
three hundred, there are one thousand three hundred and 
forty years. Thus in the period of eleven thousand three 
hundred and forty years they said that there had arisen no 
god in human form; nor even before that time or after- 
wards among the remaining kings who arose in Egypt, did 
they report that anything of that kind had come to pass. 
In this time they said that the sun had moved four times 
from his accustomed place of rising, and where he now sets 
he had thence twice had his rising, and in the place from 
whence he now rises he had twice had his setting; and in 
the meantime nothing in Egypt had been changed from its 
usual state, neither that which comes from the earth nor 
that which comes to them from the river nor that which con- 
cerns diseases or deaths. And formerly when Hecataios the 
historian was in Thebes, and had traced his descent and con- 
nected his family with a god in the sixteenth generation 
before, the priests of Zeus did for him much the same as 
they did for me (though I had not traced my descent). 
They led me into the sanctuary of the temple, which is of 
great size, and they counted up the number, showing colossal 
wooden statues in number the same as they said; for each 
chief-priest there sets up in his lifetime an image of himself: 
accordingly the priests, counting and showing me these, de- 
clared to me that each one of them was a son succeeding 
his own father, and they went up through the series of 
images from the image of the one who had died last, until 
they had declared this of the whole number. And when 
Hecataios had traced his descent and connected his family 
with a god in the sixteenth generation, they traced a descent 
in opposition to his, besides their numbering, not accepting 
it from him that a man had been born from a god ; and they 
traced their counter-descent thus, saying that each one of the 
statues had been piromis son of piromis, until they had de- 
clared this of the whole three hundred and forty-five statues, 
each one being surnamed piromis; and neither with a god 
nor a hero did they connect their descent. Now piromis 


means in the tongue of Hellas " honourable and good man." 
From their declaration then it followed, that they of whom 
the images were had been of form like this, and far removed 
from being gods: but in the time before these men they 
said that gods were the rulers in Egypt, not mingling with 
men, and that of these always one had power at a time; and 
the last of them who was king over Egypt was Oros the son 
of Osiris, whom the Hellenes call Apollo : he was king over 
Egypt last, having deposed Typhon. Now Osiris in the 
tongue of Hellas is Dionysos. 

Among the Hellenes Heracles and Dionysos and Pan are 
accounted the latest-born of the gods; but with the Egyp- 
tians Pan is a very ancient god, and he is one of those which 
are called the eight gods, while Heracles is of the second 
rank, who are called the twelve gods, and Dionysos is of the 
third rank, namely of those who were born of the twelve 
gods. Now as to Heracles I have shown already how many 
years old he is according to the Egyptians themselves, reck- 
oning down to the reign of Amasis, and Pan is said to have 
existed for yet more years than these, and Dionysos for the 
smallest number of years as compared with the others; and 
even for this last they reckon down to the reign of Amasis 
fifteen thousand years. This the Egyptians say that they 
know for a certainty, since they always kept a reckoning 
and wrote down the years as they came. Now the Dionysos 
who is said to have been bom of Semele the daughter of 
Cadmos, was born about sixteen hundred years before my 
time, and Heracles who was the son of Alcmene, about nine 
hundred years, and that Pan who was born of Penelope, for 
of her and of Hermes Pan is said by the Hellenes to have 
been born, came into being later than the wars of Troy, 
about eight hundred years before my time. Of these two 
accounts every man may adopt that one which he shall find 
the more credible when he hears it. I however, for my part, 
have already declared my opinion about them. For if these 
also, like Heracles the son of Amphitryon, had appeared be- 
fore all men's eyes and had lived their lives to old age in 
Hellas, I mean Dionysos the son of Semele and Pan the son 
of Penelope, then one would have said that these also had 
been bom mere men, having the names of those gods wlio 


had come into being long before : but as it is, with regard to 
Dionysos the Hellenes say that as soon as he was born Zeus 
sewed him up in his thigh and carried him to Nysa, which is 
above Egypt in the land of Ethiopia; and as to Pan, they 
cannot say whither he went after he was born. Hence it 
has become clear to me that the Hellenes learnt the names 
of these gods later than those of the other gods, and trace 
their descent as if their birth occurred at the time when they 
first learnt their names. 

Thus far then the history is told by the Egyptians them- 
selves; but I will now recount that which other nations also 
tell, and the Egyptians in agreement with the others, of that 
which happened in this land : and there λυιΙΙ be added to this 
also something of that which I have myself seen. 

iBeing set free after the reign of the priest of Hephaistos, 
the Egyptians, since they could not live any time without a 
king, set up over them twelve kings, having divided all 
Egypt into twelve parts. These made intermarriages with 
one another and reigned, making agreement that they would 
not put down one another by force, nor seek to get an ad- 
vantage over one another, but would live in perfect friend- 
ship : and the reason why they made these agreements, guard- 
ing them very strongly from violation, was this, namely that 
an oracle had been given to them at first when they began 
to exercise their rule, that he of them who should pour a 
libation with a bronze cup in the temple of Hephaistos, 
should be king of all Egypt (for they used to assemble to- 
gether in all the temples). Moreover they resolved to join 
all together and leave a memorial of themselves ; and having 
so resolved they caused to be made a labyrinth, situated a 
little above the lake of Moiris and nearly opposite to that 
which is called the City of Crocodiles. This I saw myself, 
and I found it greater than words can say. For if one 
should put together and reckon up all the buildings and all 
the great works produced by Hellenes, they would prove to 
be inferior in labour and expense to this labyrinth, though it 
is true that both the temple at Ephesos and that at Samos 
are works worthy of note. The pyramids also were greater 
than words can say, and each one of them is equal to many 
works of the Hellenes, great as they may be; but the laby- 


rinth surpasses even the pyramids. It has twelve courts 
covered in, with gates facing one another, six upon the 
North side and six upon the South, joining on one to an- 
other, and the same wall surrounds them all outside; and 
there are in it two .kinds of chambers, the one kind below 
the ground and the other above upon these, three thousand 
in number, of each kind fifteen hundred. The upper set of 
chambers we ourselves saw, going through them, and we tell 
of them having looked upon them with our own eyes; but 
the chambers under ground we heard about only; for the 
Egyptians who had charge of them were not willing on any 
account to show them, saying that here were the sepulchres 
of the kings who had first built this labyrinth and of the 
sacred crocodiles. Accordingly we speak of the chambers 
below by what we received from hearsay, while those above 
we saw ourselves and found them to be works of more than 
human greatness. For the passages through the chambers, 
and the goings this way and that way through the courts, 
which were admirably adorned, afforded endless matter for 
marvel, as we went through from a court to the chambers 
beyond it, and from the chambers to colonnades, and from 
the colonnades to other rooms, and then from the chambers 
again to other courts. Over the whole of these is a roof 
made of stone like the walls; and the walls are covered 
with figures carved upon them, each court being surrounded 
with pillars of white stone fitted together most perfectly; 
and at the end of the labyrinth, by the corner of it, there is 
a pyramid of forty fathoms, upon which large figures are 
carved, and to this there is a way made under ground. 

Such is this labyrinth : but a cause for marvel even greater 
than this is afforded by the lake, which is called the lake of 
Moiris, along the side of which this labyrinth is built. The 
measure of its circuit is three thousand six hundred furlongs 
(being sixty schoines), and this is the same number of fur- 
longs as the extent of Egypt itself along the sea. The lake 
lies extended lengthwise from North to South, and in depth 
where it is deepest it is fifty fathoms. That this lake is 
artificial and formed by digging is self-evident, for about 
in the middle of the lake stand two pyramids, each rising 
above the water to a height of fifty fathoms, the part which 


is built below the water being of just the same height; and 
upon each is placed a colossal statue of stone sitting upon a 
chair. Thus the pyramids are a hundred fathoms high; and 
these hundred fathoms are equal to a furlong of six hundred 
feet, the fathom being measured as six feet or four cubits, 
the feet being four palms each, and the cubits six. The 
water in the lake does not come from the place where it is, 
for the country there is very deficient in water, but it has 
been brought thither from the Nile by a canal; and for six 
months the water flows into the lake, and for six months out 
into the Nile again; and whenever it flows out, then for the 
six months it brings into the royal treasury a talent of silver 
a day from the fish which are caught, and twenty pounds 
when the water comes in. The natives of the place more- 
over said that this lake had an outlet under ground to the 
Syrtis which is in Libya, turning towards the interior of the 
continent upon the Western side and running along by the 
mountain which is above Memphis. Now since I did not see 
anywhere existing the earth dug out of this excavation (for 
that was a matter which drew my attention), I asked those 
who dwelt nearest to the lake where the earth was which 
had been dug out. These told me to what place it had been 
carried away; and I readily believed them, for I knew by 
report that a similar thing had been done at Nineveh, the 
city of the Assyrians. There certain thieves formed a de- 
sign once to carry away the wealth of Sardanapallos son of 
Ninos, the king, which wealth was very great and was kept 
in treasure-houses under the earth. Accordingly they began 
from their own dwelling, and making estimate of their di- 
rection they dug under ground towards the king's palace; 
and the earth which was brought out of the excavation they 
used to carry away, when night came on, to the river Tigris 
which flows by the city of Nineveh, until at last they accom- 
plished that which they desired. Similarly, as I heard, the 
digging of the lake in Egypt was effected, except that it 
was done not by night but during the day ; for as they dug 
the Egyptians carried to the Nile the earth which was dag 
out ; and the river, when it received it, would naturally bear 
it away and disperse it. Thus is this lake said to have been 
dug out. 


Now the twelve kings continued to rule justly, but in 
course of time it happened thus: — After sacrifice in the 
temple of Hephaistos they were about to make libation on 
the last day of the feast, and the chief-priest, in bringing 
out for them the golden cups with which they had been 
wont to pour libations, missed his reckoning and brought 
eleven only for the twelve kings. Then that one of them 
who was standing last in order, namely Psammetichos, 
since he had no cup took off from his head his helmet, which 
was of bronze, and having held it out to receive the wine 
he proceeded to make libation: likewise all the other kings 
were wont to wear helmets and they happened to have them 
then. Now Psammetichos held out his helmet with no 
treacherous meaning; but they taking note of that which 
had been done by Psammetichos and of the oracle, nam.ely 
how it had been declared to them that whosoever of them 
should make libation with a bronze cup should be sole king 
of Egypt, recollecting, I say, the saying of the Oracle, they 
did not indeed deem it right to slay Psammetichos, since they 
found by examination that he had not done it with any fore- 
thought, but they determined to strip him of almost all his 
power and to drive him away into the fen-country, and that 
from the fen-country he should not hold any dealings with 
the rest of Eg}φt. This Psammetichos had formerly been a 
fugitive from the Ethiopian Sabacos who had killed his 
father Necos, from him, I say, he had then been a fugitive in 
Syria; and when the Ethiopian had departed in consequence 
of the vision of the dream, the Egyptians who were of the 
district of Sais brought him back to his own country. Then 
afterwards, when he was king, it was his fate to be a fugitive 
a second time on account of the helmet, being driven by the 
eleven kings into the fen-country. So then holding that he 
had been grievously wronged by them, he thought how he 
might take vengeance on those who had driven him out: 
and when he had sent to the Oracle of Leto in the city of 
Buto, where the Egyptians have their most truthful Oracle, 
there was given to him the reply that vengeance would come 
when men of bronze appeared from the sea. And he was 
strongly disposed not to believe that bronze men would come 
to help him; but after no long time had passed, certain 


lonians and Carians who had sailed forth for plunder were 
compelled to come to shore in Egypt, and they having landed 
and being clad in bronze armour, one of the Egyptians, not 
having before seen men clad in bronze armour, came to the 
fen-land and brought a report to Psammetichos that bronze 
men had come from the sea and were plundering the plain. 
So he, perceiving that the saying of the Oracle was coming 
to pass, dealt in a friendly manner with the lonians and 
Carians, and with large promises he persuaded them to take 
his part. Then when he had persuaded them, with the help 
of those Egyptians who favoured his cause and of these 
foreign mercenaries he overthrew the kings. Having thus 
got power over all Egypt, Psammetichos made for He- 
phaistos that gateway of the temple at Memphis which is 
turned towards the South Wind; and he built a court for 
Apis, in which Apis is kept when he appears, opposite to 
the gateway of the temple, surrounded all with pillars and 
covered with figures ; and instead of columns there stand to 
support the roof of the court colossal statues twelve cubits 
high. Now Apis is in the tongue of the Hellenes Epaphos, 
To the lonians and to the Carians who had helped him 
Psammetichos granted portions of land to dwell in, opposite 
to one another with the river Nile between, and these were 
called "Encampments"; these portions of land he gave 
them, and he paid them besides all that he had promised: 
moreover he placed with them Egyptian boys to have them 
taught the Hellenic tongue; and from these, who learnt the 
language thoroughly, are descended the present class of in- 
terpreters in Egypt. Now the lonians and Carians occupied 
these portions of land for a long time, and they are towards 
the sea a little below the city of Bubastis, on that which 
is called the Pelusian mouth of the Nile. These men king 
Amasis afterwards removed from thence and established 
them at Memphis, making them into a guard for himself 
against the Egyptians: and they being settled in Egypt, we 
who are Hellenes know by intercourse with them the cer- 
tainty of all that which happened in Egypt beginning from 
king Psammetichos and afterwards ; for these were the first 
men of foreign tongue who settled in Egypt: and in the 
land from which they were removed there still remained 


down to my time the sheds where their ships were drawn up 
and the ruins of their houses. 

Thus then Psammetichos obtained Egypt: and of the 
Oracle which is in Egypt I have made mention often before 
this, and now I will give an account of it, seeing that it is 
worthy to be described. This Oracle which is in Egypt is 
sacred to Leto, and it is established in a great city near that 
mouth of the Nile which is called Sebennytic, as one sails 
up the river from the sea; and the name of this city where 
the Oracle is found is Buto, as I have said before in men- 
tioning it. In this Buto there is a temple of Apollo and 
Artemis; and the temple-house of Leto, in v^^hich the Oracle 
is, is both great in itself and has a gateway of the height of 
ten fathoms: but that which caused me most to marvel of the 
things to be seen there, I will now tell. There is in this 
sacred enclosure a house of Leto made of one single stone 
as regards both height and length, and of which all the walls 
are in these two directions equal, each being forty cubits; 
and for the covering in of the roof there lies another stone 
upon the top, the cornice measuring four cubits. This house 
then of all the things that were to be seen by me in that 
temple is the most marvellous, and among those which come 
next in the island called Chemmis. This is situated in a 
deep and broad lake by the side of the temple at Buto, and 
it is said by the Egyptians that this island is a floating 
island. I myself did not see it either floating about or moved 
from its place, and I feel surprise at hearing of it, wondering 
if it be indeed a floating island. In this island of Avhich I 
speak there is a great temple-house of Apollo, and three 
several altars are set up within, and there are planted in the 
island many palm-trees and other trees, both bearing fruit 
and not bearing fruit. And the Egyptians, when they say 
that it is floating, add this story, namely that in this island, 
which formerly was not floating, Leto, being one of the 
eight gods who came into existence first, and dwelling in 
the city of Buto where she has this Oracle, received Apollo 
from Isis as a charge and preserved him, concealing him 
in the island which is said now to be a floating island, at that 
time when Typhon came after him seeking everywhere and 
desiring to find the son of Osiris. Now they say that Apollo 


and Artemis are children of Dionysos and of Is'is, and that 
Leto became their nurse and preserver ; and in the Egyptian 
tongue Apollo is Oros, Demeter is Isis, and Artemis is 
Bubastis. From this story and from no other ^schylus 
the son of Euphorion took this which I shall say, wherein 
he differs from all the preceding poets; he represented 
namely that Artemis was the daughter of Demeter. For 
this reason then, they say, it became a floating island. 

Such is the story which they tell; but as for Psamme- 
tichos, he was king over Egypt for four-and-fifty years, of 
which for thirty years save one he was sitting before Azotos, 
a great city of Syria, besieging it, until at last he took it: 
and this Azotos of all cities about which we have knowledge 
held out for the longest time under a siege. 

The son of Psammetichos was Necos, and he became king 
of Egypt. This man was the first who attempted the channel 
leading to the Erythraian Sea, which Dareios the Persian 
afterwards completed: the length of this is a voyage of four 
days, and in breadth it was so dug that two triremes could 
go side by side driven by oars ; and the water is brought into 
it from the Nile. The channel is conducted a little above 
the city of Bubastis by Patumos the Arabian city, and runs 
into the Erythraian Sea : and it is dug first along those parts 
of the plain of Egypt which lie towards Arabia, just above 
which run the mountains which extend opposite Memphis, 
where are the stone-quarries, — along the base of these 
mountains the channel is conducted from West to East for 
a great way; and after that it is directed towards a break 
in the hills and tends from these mountains towards the 
noon-day and the South Wind to the Arabian gulf. Now 
in the place where the journey is least and shortest from the 
Northern to the Southern Sea (which is also called 
Erythraian), that is from Mount Casion, which is the 
boundary between Egypt and Syria, the distance is exactly 
a thousand furlongs to the Arabian gulf; but the channel is 
much longer, since it is more winding; and in the reign of 
Necos there perished while digging it twelve myriads of the 
Egyptians. Now Necos ceased in the midst of his digging, 
because the utterance of an Oracle impeded him, which was 
to the effect that he was working for the Barbarian: and the 


Egyptians call all men Barbarians who do not agree with 
them in speech. Thus having ceased from the work of the 
channel, NecSs betook himself to waging wars, and triremes 
were built by him, some for the Northern Sea and others 
in the Arabian gulf for the Erythraian Sea; and of these 
the sheds are still to be seen. These ships he used when he 
needed them; and also on land Necos engaged battle at 
Magdolos with the Syrians, and conquered them; and 
after this he took Cadytis, which is a great city of Syria: 
and the dress which he wore when he made these con- 
quests he dedicated to Apollo, sending it to Branchidai of 
the Milesians. After this, having reigned in all sixteen years, 
he brought his life to an end, and handed on the kingdom to 
Psammis his son. 

While this Psammis was king of Egypt, there came to him 
men sent by the Eleians, who boasted that they ordered the 
contest at Olympia in the most just and honourable manner 
possible and thought that not even the Egyptians, the wisest 
of men, could find out anything besides, to be added to their 
rules. Now when the Eleians came to Egypt and said that 
for which they had come, then this king called together 
those of the Egyptians who were reputed the wisest, and 
when the Egyptians had come together they heard the 
Eleians tell of all that which it was their part to do in regard 
to the contest; and when they had related everything, they 
said that they had come to learn in addition anything which 
the Egyptians might be able to find out besides, which was 
juster than this. They then having consulted together asked 
the Eleians whether their own citizens took part in the con- 
test; and they said that it was permitted to any one who 
desired it, both of their own people and of the other Hellenes 
equally, to take part in the contest : upon which the Egyptians 
said that in so ordering the games they had wholly missed 
the mark of justice; for it could not be but that they would 
take part with the man of their own State, if he was con- 
tending, and so act unfairly to the stranger: but if they 
really desired, as they said, to order the games justly, and 
if this was the cause for which they had come to Egypt, they 
advised them to order the contest so as to be for strangers 
alone to contend in, and that no Eleian should be permitted 


to contend. Such was the suggestion made by the Egyptians 
to the Eleians. 

When Psammis had been king of Egypt for only six 
years and had made an expedition to Ethiopia and imme- 
diately afterwards had ended his life, Apries the son of 
Psammis received the kingdom in succession. This man 
came to be the most prosperous of all the kings up to that 
time except only his forefather Psammetichos ; and he 
reigned five-and-twenty years, during which he led an army 
against Sidon and fought a sea-fight with the king of Tyre. 
Since however it was fated that evil should come upon him, 
it came by occasion of a matter which I shall relate at 
greater length in the Libyan history, and at present but 
shortly. Apries having sent a great expedition against the 
Kyrenians, met with correspondingly great disaster ; and the 
Egyptians considering him to blame for this revolted from 
him, supposing that Apries had with forethought sent them 
out to evident calamity, in order (as they said) that there 
might be a slaughter of them, and he might the more 
securely rule over the other Egyptians. Being indignant 
at this, both these men who had returned from the expedition 
and also the friends of those who had perished made revolt 
openly. Hearing this Apries sent to them Amasis, to cause 
them to cease by persuasion ; and when he had come and was 
seeking to restrain the Egyptians, as he was speaking and 
telling them not to do so, one of the Egyptians stood up 
behind him and put a helmet upon his head, saying as he did 
so that he put it on to crown him king. And to him this 
that was done was in some degree not unwelcome, as he 
proved by his behaviour; for as soon as the revolted 
Eg}φtians had set him up as king, he prepared to march 
against Apries: and Apries hearing this sent to Amasis one 
of the Egyptians who were about his own person, a man of 
reputation, whose name was Patarbemis, enjoining him to 
bring Amasis alive into his presence. When tliis Patarbemis 
came and summoned Amasis, the latter, who happened to be 
sitting on horseback, lifted up his leg and behaved in an 
unseemly manner, bidding him take that back to Apries. 
Nevertheless, they say, Patarbemis made demand of him that 
he should go to the king, seeing that the king had sent to 


summon him; and he answered him that he had for some 
time past been preparing to do so, and that Apries would 
have no occasion to find fault with him, for he would both 
come himself and bring others with him. Then Patarbemis 
both perceiving his intention from that which he said, and 
also seeing his preparations, departed in haste, desiring to 
make known as quickly as possible to the king the things 
which were being done: and when he came back to Apries 
not bringing Amasis, the king paying no regard to that which 
he said, but being moved by violent anger, ordered his ears 
and his nose to be cut off. And the rest of the Eg}φtians 
who still remained on his side, when they saw the man of 
most repute among them thus suffering shameful outrage, 
waited no longer but joined the others in revolt, and 
delivered themselves over to Amasis. Then Apries having 
heard this also, armed his foreign mercenaries and marched 
against the Egyptians: now he had about him Carian and 
Ionian mercenaries to the number of thirty thousand; and 
his royaj palace was in the city of Sa'is, of great size and 
worthy to be seen. So Apries and his army were going 
against the Egyptians, and Amasis and those with him were 
going against the mercenaries; and both sides came to the 
cit)' of Momemphis and were about to make trial of one 
another in fight. 

Now of the Egyptians there are seven classes, and of 
these one class is called that of the priests, and another that 
of the warriors, while the others are the cowherds, swine- 
herds, shopkeepers, interpreters, and boatmen. This is the 
number of the classes of the Egyptians, and their names are 
given them from the occupations which they follow. Of 
them the warriors are called Calasirians and Hermotybians, 
and they are of the following districts, — for all Egypt is 
divided into districts. The districts of the Hermotybians 
are those of Busiris, Sai's, Chemmis, Papremis, the island 
called Prosopitis, and the half of Natho, — of these districts 
are the Hermotybians, who reached Avhen most numerous 
the number of sixteen myriads. Of these not one has learnt 
anything of handicraft, but they are given up to war entirely. 
Again the districts of the Calasirians are those of Thebes, 
Bubastis, Aphthis, Tanis, Mendes, Sebennytos, Athribis, 


Pharbaithos, Thmms, Onuphis, Anytis, Myecphoris, — this 
last is on an island opposite to the city of Bubastis. These 
are the districts of the Calasirians; and they reached, when 
most numerous, to the number of five-and-twenty myriads 
of men; nor is it lawful for these, any more than for the 
others, to practise any craft; but they practise that which 
has to do with war only, handing down the tradition from 
father to son. Now whether the Hellenes have learnt this 
also from the Egyptians, I am not able to say for certain, 
since I see that the Thracians also and Scythians and Per- 
sians and Lydians and almost all the Barbarians esteem 
those of their citizens who learn the arts, and the de- 
scendants of them, as less honourable than the rest; while 
those who have got free from all practice of manual arts 
are accounted noble, and especially those who are devoted 
to war: however that may be, the Hellenes have all learnt 
this, and especially the Lacedemonians; but the Corinthians 
least of all cast slight upon those who practise handicraft. 

The following privilege was specially granted to this class 
and to none others of the Egyptians except the priests, that is 
to say, each man had twelve yokes of land specially granted 
to him free from imposts: now the yoke of land measures 
a hundred Egyptian cubits every way, and the Egyptian 
cubit is, as it happens, equal to that of Samos. This, I say, 
was a special privilege granted to all, and they also had 
certain advantages in turn and not the same men twice; 
that is to say, a thousand of the Calasirians and a thousand 
of the Hermotybians acted as body-guard to the king during 
each year; and these had besides their yokes of land an 
allowance given them for each day of five pounds weight 
of bread to each man, and two pounds of beef, and four 
half-pints of wine. This was the allowance given to those 
who were serving as the king's body-guard for the time 

So when Apries leading his foreign mercenaries, and 
Amasis at the head of the whole body of the Egyptians, in 
their approach to one another had come to the city of Mo- 
memphis, they engaged battle: and although the foreign 
troops fought well, yet being much inferior in number they 
were worsted by reason of this. But Apries is said to have 


supposed that not even a god would be able to cause him to 
cease from his rule, so firmly did he think that it was 
established. In that battle then, I say, he was worsted, and 
being taken alive was brought away to the city of Sa'is, to 
that which had formerly been his own dwelling but from 
thenceforth was the palace of Amasis. There for some time 
he was kept in the palace, and Amasis dealt well with him 
but at last, since the Egyptians blamed him, saying that he 
acted not rightly in keeping alive him who was the greatest 
foe both to themselves and to him, therefore he delivered 
Apries over to the Egyptians; and they strangled him, and 
after that buried him in the burial-place of his fathers: this 
is in the temple of Athene, close to the sanctuary, on the left 
hand as you enter. Now the men of Sa'is buried all those of 
this district who had been kings, within the temple; for 
the tomb of Amasis also, though it is further from the 
sanctuary than that of Apries and his forefathers, yet this 
too is within the court of the temple, and it consists of a 
colonnade of stone of great size, with pillars carved to imi- 
tate date-palms, and otherwise sumptuously adorned; and 
within the colonnade are double doors, and inside the doors 
a sepulchral chamber. Also at Sais there is the burial-place 
of him whom I account it not pious to name in connexion 
with such a matter, which is in the temple of Athene behind 
the house of the goddess, stretching along the whole wall of 
it; and in the sacred enclosure stand great obelisks of stone, 
and near them is a lake adorned with an edging of stone 
and fairly made in a circle, being in size, as it seemed to me, 
equal to that which is called the " Round Pool " in Delos. 
On this lake they perform by night the show of his suffer- 
ings, and this the Egyptians call Mysteries. Of these things 
I know more fully in detail how they take place, but I shall 
leave this unspoken; and of the mystic rites of Demeter, 
which the Hellenes call thesmophoria, of these also, although 
I know, I shall leave unspoken all except so much as pjety 
permits me to tell. The daughters of Danaos were they 
who brought this rite out of Egypt and taught it to the 
women of the Pelasgians; then afterwards when all the in- 
habitants of Peloponnese were driven out by the Dorians, 
the rite was lost, and only those who were left behind of the 


Peloponnesians and not driven out, that is to say the Ar- 
cadians, preserved it. 

Apries having thus been overthrown, Amasis became 
king, being of the district of Sa'is, and the name of the city 
whence he was is Siuph. Now at the first the Egyptians 
despised Amasis and held him in no great regard, because 
he had been a man of the people and was of no distinguished 
family; but afterwards Amasis won them over to himself 
by wisdom and not wilfulness. Among innumerable other 
things of price which he had, there was a foot-basin of gold 
in which both Amasis himself and all his guests were wont 
always to wash their feet. This he broke up, and of it he 
caused to be made the image of a god, and set it up in the 
city, where it was most convenient; and the Egyptians went 
continually to visit the image and did great reverence to it. 
Then Amasis, having learnt that which was done by the men 
of the city, called together the Egyptians and made known 
to them the matter, saying that the image had been produced 
from the foot-basin, into which formerly the Egyptians 
used to vomit and make water, and in which they washed 
their feet, whereas now they did to it great reverence; and 
just so, he continued, had he himself now fared, as the foot- 
basin ; for though formerly he was a man of the people, yet 
now he was their king, and he bade them accordingly honour 
him and have regard for him. In such manner he won the 
Egyptians to himself, so that they consented to be his sub- 
jects; and his ordering of affairs was this: — In the early 
morning, and until the time of the filling of the market he 
did with a good will the business which was brought before 
him; but after this he passed the time in drinking and in 
jesting at his boon-companions, and was frivolous and play- 
ful. And his friends being troubled at it admonished him in 
some such words as these : " Ο king, thou dost not rightly 
govern thyself in thus letting thyself descend to behaviour so 
trifling ; for thou oughtest rather to have been sitting through- 
out the day stately upon a stately throne and administering thy 
business ; and so the Egyptians would have been assured that 
they were ruled by a great man, and thou wouldest have had 
a better report: but as it is, thou art acting by no means in 
a kingly fashion." And he answered them thus : " They who 


have bows stretch them at such time as they wish to use them, 
and when they have finished using them they loose them 
again; for if they were stretched tight always they would 
break, so that the men would not be able to use them when 
they needed them. So also is the state of man : if he should 
always be in earnest and not relax himself for sport at the 
due time, he would either go mad or be struck with stupor be- 
fore he was aware ; and knowing this well, I distribute a 
portion of the time to each of the two ways of living." Thus 
he replied to his friends. It is said however that Amasis, 
even when he was in a private station, was a lover of drink- 
ing and of jesting, and not at all seriously disposed; and 
whenever his means of livelihood failed him through his 
drinking and luxurious living, he would go about and steal; 
and they from whom he stole would charge him with having 
their property, and when he denied it would bring him 
before the judgment of an Oracle, whenever there was one 
in their place; and many times he was convicted by the 
Oracles and many times he was absolved: and then when 
finally he became king he did as follows : — as many of the 
gods as had absolved him and pronounced him not to be 
a thief, to their temples he paid no regard, nor gave any- 
thing for the further adornment of them, nor even visited 
them to offer sacrifice, considering them to be worth nothing 
and to possess lying Oracles; but as many as had convicted 
him of being a thief, to these he paid very great regard, 
considering them to be truly gods, and to present Oracles 
which did not lie. First in Sais he built and completed for 
Athene a temple-gateway which is a great marvel, and he 
far surpassed herein all who had done the like before, both 
in regard to height and greatness, so large are the stones and 
of such quality. Then secondly he dedicated great colossal 
statues and man-headed sphinxes very large, and for restora- 
tion he brought other stones of monstrous size. Some of 
these he caused to be brought from the stone-quarries which 
are opposite Memphis, others of very great size from the 
city of Elephantine, distant a voyage of not less than twenty 
days from Sais: and of them all Τ marvel most at this, 
namely a monolith chamber which he brought from the city 
of Elephantine; and they were three years engaged in bring- 


ing this, and two thousand men were appointed to convey it, 
who all were of the class of boatmen. Of this house the 
length outside is one-and-twenty cubits, the breadth is four- 
teen cubits, and the height eight. These are the measures 
of the monolith house outside; but the length inside is 
eighteen cubits and five-sixths of a cubit, the breadth twelve 
cubits, and the height five cubits. This lies by the side of 
the entrance to the temple ; for within the temple they did not 
draw it, because, as it is said, while the house was being 
drawn along, the chief artificer of it groaned aloud, seeing 
that much time had been spent and he was wearied by the 
work; and Amasis took it to heart as a warning and did 
not allow them to draw it further onwards. Some say on 
the other hand that a man was killed by it, of those who 
were heaving it with levers, and that it was not drawn in 
for that reason. Amasis also dedicated in all the other tem- 
ples which were of repute, works which are worth seeing 
for their size, and among them also at Memphis the colossal 
statue which lies on its back in front of the temple of 
Hephaistos, whose length is five-and-seventy feet; and on 
the same base made of the same stone are set two colossal 
statues, each of twenty feet in length, one on this side and 
the other on that side of the large statue. There is also 
another of stone of the same size in Sais, lying in the same 
manner as that at Memphis. Moreover Amasis was he who 
built and finished for Isis her temple at Memphis, which is 
of great size and very worthy to be seen. 

In the reign of Amasis it is said that Egypt became more 
prosperous than at any other time before, both in regard to 
that which comes to the land from the river and in regard 
to that which comes from the land to its inhabitants, and 
that at this time the inhabited towns in it numbered in all 
twenty thousand. It was Amasis too who established the law 
that every year each one of the Egyptians should declare to the 
ruler of his district, from what source he got his livelihood, 
and if any man did not do this or did not make declaration 
of an honest way of living, he should be punished with death. 
Now Solon the Athenian received from Egypt this law and 
had it enacted for the Athenians, and they have continued to 
observe it, since it is a law with which none can find fault. 


Moreover Amasis became a lover of the Hellenes; and 
besides other proofs of friendship which he gave to several 
among them, he also granted the city of Naucratis for those 
of them who came to Egypt to dwell in; and to those who 
did not desire to stay, but who made voyages thither, he 
granted portions of land to set up altars and make sacred 
enclosures for their gods. Their greatest enclosure and 
that one which has most name and is most frequented is 
called the Hellenion, and this was established by the follow- 
ing cities in common: — of the lonians Chios, Teos, Phocaia, 
Clazomenai, of the Dorians Rhodes, Cnidos, Halicarnassos, 
Phaselis, and of the Aiolians Mytilene alone. To these be- 
longs this enclosure and these are the cities which appoint 
superintendents of the port; and all other cities which claim 
a share in it, are making a claim without any right. Besides 
this the Eginetans established on their own account a sacred 
enclosure dedicated to Zeus, the Samians one to Hera, and 
the Milesians one to Apollo. Now in old times Naucratis 
alone was an open trading-place, and no other place in 
Egypt : and if any one came to any other of the Nile mouths, 
he was compelled to swear that he came not thither of his 
own will, and Avhen he had thus sworn his innocence he had 
to sail with his ship to the Canobic mouth, or if it were not 
possible to sail by reason of contrary winds, then he had to 
carry his cargo round the head of the Delta in boats to 
Naucratis : thus highly was Naucratis privileged. Moreover 
when the Amphictyons had let out the contract for building 
the temple which now exists at Delphi, agreeing to pay a sum 
of three hundred talents ( for the temple which formerly stood 
there had been burnt down of itself), it fell to the share of 
the people of Delphi to provide the fourth part of the pay- 
ment; and accordingly the Delphians went about to various 
cities and collected contributions. And when they did this they 
got from Egypt as much as from any place, for Amasis gave 
them a thousand talents' weight of alum, while the Hellenes 
who dwelt in Egypt gave them twenty pounds of silver. 

Also with the people of Kyrene Amasis made an agree- 
ment for friendship and alliance ; and he resolved too to 
marry a wife from thence, whether because he desired to 
have a wife of Hellenic race, or, apart from that, on aC" 


count of friendship for the people of Kyrene: however that 
may be, he married, some say the daughter of Battos, others 
of Arkesilaos, and others of Critobulos, a man of repute 
among the citizens; and her name was Ladike. Now 
whenever Amasis lay with her he found himself unable to have 
intercourse, but with his other wives he associated as he Avas 
wont; and as this happened repeatedly, Amasis said to 
his wife, whose name was Ladike: " Woman, thou hast gi\'en 
me drugs, and thou shalt surely perish more miserably than 
any other." Then Ladike, when by her denials Amasis was 
not at all appeased in his anger against her, made a a^ow in 
her soul to Aphrodite, that if Amasis on that night had 
intercourse Avith her (seeing that this was the remedy for 
her danger), she would send an image to be dedicated to 
her at Kyrene; and after the vow immediately Amasis had 
intercourse, and from thenceforth whenever Amasis came 
in to her he had intercourse with her; and after this he 
became very greatly attached to her. And Ladike paid the 
vow that she had made to the goddess ; for she had an image 
made and sent it to Kyrene, and it was still preserved even 
to my own time, standing with its face turned away from the 
city of the Kyrenians. This Ladike Cambyses, having con- 
quered Egypt and heard from her who she was, sent back 
unharmed to Kyrene. 

Amasis also dedicated offerings in Hellas, first at Kyrene 
an image of Athene covered over with gold and a figure 
of himself made like by painting; then in the temple of 
Athene at Lindos two images of stone and a corslet of linen 
worthy to be seen; and also at Samos two wooden figures of 
himself dedicated to Hera, which were standing even to my 
own time in the great temple, behind the doors. Now at 
Samos he dedicated offerings because of the guest-friend- 
ship between himself and Polycrates the son of Aiakes; at 
Lindos for no guest-friendship but because the temple of 
Athene at Lindos is said to have been founded by the 
daughters of Danaos, who had touched land there at the 
time when they were fleeing from the sons of Aigyptos. 
These offerings were dedicated by Amasis ; and he was the 
first of men who conquered Cyprus and subdued it so that 
it paid him tribute. 





The dates of the birth and death of Tacitus are uncertain, but 
it is probable that he was born about 5^ A. D. and died after 117. 
He was a contemporary and friend of the younger Pliny, who 
addressed to him some of his most famous epistles, to be found 
in another volume of the Harvard Classics. Tacitus was appar- 
ently of the equestrian class, was an advocate by training, and 
had a reputation as an orator, though none of his speeches has. 
survived. He held a number of important public offices, and 
married the daughter of Agricola, the conqueror of Britain, whose 
life he wrote. 

The two chief works of Tacitus, the "Annals" and the "His- 
tories," covered the history of Rome from the death of Augustus 
to A. D. g6; but the greater part of the "Histories" is lost, and 
the fragment that remains deals only with the year 6g and part 
of 70. In the "Annals" there are several gaps, but what survives 
describes a large part of the reigns of Tiberius, Claudius, and 
Nero. His minor works, besides the life of Agricola, already 
mentioned, are a "Dialogue on Orators" and the account of Ger- 
many, its situation, its inhabitants, their character and customs, 
which is here printed. 

Tacitus stands in the front rank of the historians of antiquity 
for the accuracy of his learning, the fairness of his judgments, 
the richness, concentration, and precision of his style. His great 
successor. Gibbon, called him a "philosophical historian, whose 
writings will instruct the last generations of mankind" ; and Mon^ 
taigne knew no author "who, in a work of history, has taken so 
broad a view of human events or given a more just analysis of 
particular characters." 

The "Germany" is a document of the greatest interest and im- 
portance, since it gives us by far the most detailed account of 
the state of culture among the tribes that are the ancestors of the 
modern Teutonic nations, at the time when they first came into 
contact with the civilization of the Mediterranean. 



THE whole of Germany is thus bounded; separated 
from Gaul, from Rhoetia and Pannonia, by the 
rivers Rhine and Danube; from Sarmatia and Dacia 
by mutual fear, or by high mountains: the rest is encom- 
passed by the ocean, which forms huge bays, and com- 
prehends a tract of islands immense in extent : for we have 
lately known certain nations and kingdoms there, such as 
the war discovered. The Rhine rising in the Rhoetian Alps 
from a summit altogether rocky and perpendicular, after 
a small winding towards the west, is lost in the Northern 
Ocean. The Danube issues out of the mountain Abnoba, 
one very high but very easy of ascent, and traversing 
several nations, falls by six streams into the Euxine Sea; 
for its seventh channel is absorbed in the Fenns. 

The Germans, I am apt to believe, derive their original 
from no other people; and are nowise mixed with different 
nations arriving amongst them: since anciently those who 
went in search of new dwellings, travelled not by land, but 
were carried in fleets ; and into that mighty ocean so bound- 
less, and, as I may call it, so repugnant and forbidding, ships 
from our world rarely enter. Moreover, besides the dangers 
from a sea tempestuous, horrid and unknown, who would 
relinquish Asia, or Africa, or Italy, to repair to Germany, 
a region hideous and rude, under a rigorous climate, dis- 
mal to behold or to manure^ unless the same were his native 
country? In their old ballads (which amongst them are the 
only sort of registers and history) they celebrate Tuisto, 
a God sprung from the earth, and Mannus his son, as the 
fathers and founders of the nation. To Mannus they assign 
three sons, after whose names so many people are called; 
the Ingaevones, dwelling next the ocean; the Herminones, 

* To cultivate. 



in the middle country; and all the rest, Instaevones. Some, 
borrowing a warrant from the darkness of antiquity, main- 
tain that the God had more sons, that thence came more 
denominations of people, the Marsians, Cambrians, 
Suevians, and Vandalians, and that these are the names 
truly genuine and original. For the rest, they affirm Ger- 
many to be a recent word, lately bestowed: for that those 
who first passed the Rhine and expulsed the Gauls, and are 
now named Tungrians, were then called Germans: and 
thus by degrees the name of a tribe prevailed, not that of 
the nation; so that by an appellation at first occasioned by 
terror 'and conquest, they afterwards chose to be dis- 
tinguished, and assuming a name lately invented were 
universally called Germans. 

They have a tradition that Hercules also had been in 
their country, and him above all other heroes they extol 
in their songs when they advance to battle. Amongst them 
too are found that kind of verses by the recital of which 
(by them called Barding) they inspire bravery; nay, by 
such chanting itself they divine the success of the approach- 
ing fight. For, according to the different din of the battle, 
they urge furiously, or shrink timorously. Nor does what 
they utter, so much seem to be singing as the voice and 
exertion of valour. They chiefly study a tone fierce and 
harsh, with a broken and unequal murmur, and therefore 
apply their shields to their mouths, whence the voice may 
by rebounding swell with greater fulness and force. Be- 
sides there are some of opinion, that Ulysses, whilst he 
wandered about in his long and fabulous voyages, was 
carried into this ocean and entered Germany, and that by 
him Asciburgium was founded and named, a city at this 
day standing and inhabited upon the bank of the Rhine: 
nay, that in the same place was formerly found an altar 
dedicated to Ulysses, with the name of his father Laertes 
added to his own, and that upon the confines of Germany 
and Rhoetia are still extant certain monuments and tombs 
inscribed with Greek characters. Traditions these which 
I mean not either to confirm with arguments of my own 
or to refute. Let every one believe or deny the same ac- 
cording to his own bent. 


For myself, I concur in opinion with such as suppose the 
people of Germany never to have mingled by inter-mar- 
riages with other nations, but to have remained a people 
pure, and independent, and resembling none but themselves. 
Hence amongst such a mighty multitude of men, the same 
make and form is found in all, eyes stern and blue, yellow 
hair, huge bodies, but vigorous only in the first onset. Of 
pains and labour they are not equally patient, nor can 
they at all endure thrift and heat. To bear hunger and 
cold they are hardened by their climate and soil. 

Their lands, however somewhat different in aspect, yet 
taken all together consist of gloomy forests or nasty 
marshes; lower and moister towards the confines of Gaul, 
more mountainous and windy towards Noricum and Pan- 
nonia; very apt to bear grain, but altogether unkindly to 
fruit trees; abounding in flocks and herds, but generally 
small of growth. Nor even in their oxen is found the 
usual stateliness, no more than the natural ornaments and 
grandeur of head. In the number of their herds they re- 
joice; and these are their only, these their most desirable 
riches. Silver and gold the Gods have denied them, 
whether in mercy or in wrath, I am unable to determine. 
Yet I would not venture to aver that in Germany no vein 
of gold or silver is produced; for who has ever searched? 
For the use and possession, it is certain they care not. 
Amongst them indeed are to be seen vessels of silver, such 
as have been presented to their Princes and Ambassadors, 
but holden in no other esteem than vessels made of earth. 
The Germans however adjoining to our frontiers value 
gold and silver for the purposes of commerce, and are wont 
to distinguish and prefer certain of our coins. They who 
live more remote are more primitive and simple in their 
dealings, and exchange one commodity for another. The 
money which they like is the old and long known, that 
indented,'^ or that impressed with a chariot and two horses. 
Silver too is what they seek more than gold, from no fond- 
ness or preference, but because small pieces are more ready 
in purchasing things cheap and common. 

Neither in truth do they abound in iron, as from the 

' With milled edges. 
HC— Vol. 33 (4) 


fashion of their weapons may be gathered. Swords they 
rarely use, or the larger spear. They carry javelins or, 
in their own language, framms, pointed with a piece of 
iron short and narrow, but so sharp and manageable, that 
with the same weapon they can fight at a distance or hand 
to hand, just as need requires. Nay, the horsemen also are 
content with a shield and a javelin. The foot throw like- 
wise weapons missive, each particular is armed with many, 
and hurls them a mighty space, all naked or only wearing 
a light cassock. In their equipment they show no ostenta- 
tion ; only that their shields are diversified and adorned with 
curious colours. With coats of mail very few are fur- 
nished, and hardly upon any is seen a headpiece or helmet. 
Their horses are nowise signal either in fashion or in fleet- 
ness; nor taught to wheel and bound, according to the prac- 
tice of the Romans : they only move them forward in a line, 
or turn them right about, with such compactness and equality 
that no one is ever behind the rest. To one who considers 
the whole it is manifest, that in their foot their principal 
strength lies, and therefore they fight intermixed with the 
horse : for such is their swiftness as to match and suit with 
the motions and engagements of the cavalry. So that the 
infantry are elected from amongst the most robust of their 
youth, and placed in front of the army. The number to 
be sent is also ascertained, out of every village an hiindred, 
and by this very name they continue to be called at home, 
those of the hundred hand: thus what was at first no more 
than a number, becomes thenceforth a title and distinction 
of honour. In arraying their army, they divide the whole 
into distinct battalions formed sharp in front. To recoil in 
battle, provided you return again to the attack, passes with 
them rather for policy than fear. Even when the combat 
is no more than doubtful, they bear away the bodies of their 
slain. The most glaring disgrace that can befall them, 
is to have quitted their shield; nor to one branded with such 
ignominy is it lawful to join in their sacrifices, or to enter 
into their assemblies; and many who had escaped in the 
day of battle, have hanged themselves to put an end to 
this their infamy. 

In the choice of kings they are determined by the splen- 


dour of their race, in that of generals by their bravery. 
Neither is the power of their kings unbounded or arbitrary: 
and their generals procure obedience not so much by the 
force of their authority as by that of their example, when 
they appear enterprising and brave, when they signalise 
themselves by courage and prowess ; and if they surpass 
all in admiration and pre-eminence, if they surpass all at 
the head of an army. But to none else but the Priests 
is it allowed to exercise correction, or to inflict bonds or 
stripes. Nor Avhen the Priests do this, is the same con- 
sidered as a punishment, or arising from the orders of 
the general, but from the immediate command of the Deity, 
Him whom they believe to accompany them in war. They 
therefore carry with them when going to fight, certain 
images and figures taken out of their holy groves. What 
proves the principal incentive to their valour is, that it is 
not at random nor by the fortuitous conflux of men that 
their troops and pointed battalions are formed, but by the 
conjunction of whole families, and tribes of relations. 
Moreover, close to the field of battle are lodged all the 
nearest and most interesting pledges of nature. Hence 
they hear the doleful bowlings of their wives, hence the 
cries of their tender infants. These are to each particular 
the witnesses whom he most reverences and dreads; these 
yield him the praise which affect him most. Their woimds 
and maims they carry to their mothers, or to their wives, 
neither are their mothers or wives shocked in telling, or 
in sucking their bleeding sores.* Nay, to their husbands 
and sons whilst engaged in battle, they administer meat and 

In history we find, that some armies already yielding and 
ready to fly, have been by the women restored, through 
their inflexible importunity and entreaties, presenting their 
breasts, and showing their impending captivity; an evil 
to the Germans then by far most dreadful when it befalls 
their women. So that the spirit of such cities as amongst 
their hostages are enjoined to send their damsels of quality, 
is always engaged more effectually than that of others. 
They even believe them endowed with something celestial 

*Nec illae numerare aut exigere plagas pavent. 


and the spirit of prophecy. Neither do they disdain to 
consult them, nor neglect the responses which they return. 
In the reign of the deified Vespasian, we have seen Veleda 
for a long time, and by many nations, esteemed and adored 
as a divinity. In times past they likewise worshipped 
'Aurinia and several more, from no complaisance or effort 
of flattery, nor as Deities of their own creating. 

Of all the Gods, Mercury is he whom they worship most. 
To him on certain stated days it is lawful to offer even 
human victims. Hercules and Mars they appease with 
beasts usually allowed for sacrifice. Some of the Suevians 
make likewise immolations to Isis. Concerning the cause 
and original of this foreign sacrifice I have found small 
light; unless the figure of her image formed like a galley, 
show that such devotion arrived from abroad. For the 
rest, from the grandeur and majesty of beings celestial, 
they judge it altogether unsuitable to hold the Gods en- 
closed within walls, or to represent them under any human 
likeness. They consecrate whole woods and groves, and 
by the names of the Gods they call these recesses; divinities 
these, which only in contemplation and mental reverence 
they behold. 

To the use of lots and auguries, they are addicted beyond 
all other nations. Their method of divining by lots is ex- 
ceeding simple. From a tree which bears fruit they cut a 
twig, and divide it into two small pieces. These they dis- 
tinguish by so many several marks, and throw them at ran- 
dom and without order upon a white garment. Then the 
Priest of the community, if for the public the lots are con- 
sulted, or the father of a family if about a private concern, 
after he has solemnly invoked the Gods, with eyes lifted 
up to heaven, takes up every piece thrice, and having done 
thus forms a judgment according to the marks before made. 
If the chances have proved forbidding, they are no more 
consulted upon the same affair during the same day: even 
when they are inviting, yet, for confirmation, the faith of 
auguries too is tried. Yea, here also is the known practice 
of divining events from the voices and flight of birds. 
But to this nation it is peculiar, to learn presages and 
admonitions divine from horses also. These are nourished 


by the State in the same sacred woods and groves, all milk- 
white and employed in no earthly labour. These yoked in 
the holy chariot, are accompanied by the Priest and the 
King, or the Chief of the community, who both carefully 
observed his actions and neighing. Nor in any sort of 
augury is more faith and assurance reposed, not by the 
populace only, but even by the nobles, even by the Priests. 
These account themselves the ministers of the Gods, and 
the horses privy to his will. They have likewise another 
meihod of divination, whence to learn the issue of great 
and mighty wars. From the nation with whom they are at 
war they contrive, it avails not how, to gain a captive : him 
they engage in combat with one selected from amongst 
themselves, each armed after the manner of his country, 
and according as the victory falls to this or to the other, 
gather a presage of the whole. 

Affairs of smaller moment the chiefs determine : about 
matters of higher consequence the whole nation deliberates; 
yet in such sort, that whatever depends upon the pleasure 
and decision of the people, is examined and discussed by 
the chiefs. Where no accident or emergency intervenes, 
they assemble upon stated days, either, when the moon 
changes, or is full : since they believe such seasons to be 
the most fortunate for beginning all transactions. Neither 
in reckoning of time do they count, like us, the number of 
days but that of nights. In this style their ordinances are 
framed, in this style their diets appointed; and with them 
the night seems to lead and govern the day. From their 
extensive liberty this evil and default flows, that they meet 
not at once, nor as men commanded and afraid to disobey; 
so that often the second day, nay often the third, is con- 
sumed through the slowness of the members in assembling. 
They sit down as they list, promiscuously, like a crowd, and 
all armed. It is by the Priests that silence is enjoined, 
and with the power of correction the Priests are then in- 
vested. Then the King or Chief is heard, as are others, 
each according to his precedence in age, or in nobility, or 
in warlike renown, or in eloquence; and the influence of 
every speaker proceeds rather from his ability to persuade 
than from any authority to command. If the proposition 


displease, they reject it by an inarticulate murmur: if it 
be pleasing, they brandish their javelins. The most 
honourable manner of signifying their assent, is to express 
their applause by the sound of their arms. 

In the assembly it is allowed to present accusations, and 
to prosecute capital offences. Punishments vary accord- 
ing to the quality of the crime. Traitors and deserters they 
hang upon trees. Cowards, and sluggards, and unnatural 
prostitutes they smother in mud and bogs under an heap 
of hurdles. Such diversity in their executions has this 
view, that in punishing of glaring iniquities, it behoves 
likewise to display them to sight; but effeminacy and 
pollution must be buried and concealed. In lighter trans- 
gressions too the penalty is measured by the fault, and the 
delinquents upon conviction are condemned to pay a cer- 
tain number of horses or cattle. Part of this mulct accrues 
to the King or to the community, part to him whose wrongs 
are vindicated, or to his next kindred. In the same as- 
semblies are also chosen their chiefs or rulers, such as 
administer justice in their villages and boroughs. To each 
of these are assigned an hundred persons chosen from 
amongst the populace, to accompany and assist him, men 
who help him at once with their authority and their counsel. 

Without being armed they transact nothing, whether of 
public or private concernment. But it is repugnant to their 
custom for any man to use arms, before the community has 
attested his capacity to wield them. Upon such testimonial, 
either one of the rulers, or his father, or some kinsman 
dignify the young man in the midst of the assembly, with 
a shield and javelin. This amongst them is the manly robe, 
this the first degree of honour conferred upon their youth. 
Before this they seem no more than part of a private family, 
but thenceforward part of the Commonweal. The princely 
dignity they confer even upon striplings, whose race is 
eminently noble, or whose fathers have done great and 
signal services to the State. For about the rest, who are 
more vigorous and long since tried, they crowd to attend: 
nor is it any shame to be seem amongst the followers of 
these. Nay, there are likewise degrees of followers, higher 
or lower, just as he whom they follow judges fit. Mighty 


too is the emulation amongst these followers, of each to 
be first in favour Avith his Prince; mighty also the emula- 
tion of the Princes, to excel in the number and valour of 
followers. This is their principal state, this their chief 
force, to be at all times surrounded with a huge band of 
chosen young men, for ornament and glory in peace, for 
security and defence in war. Nor is it amongst his own 
people only, but even from the neighbouring communities, 
that any of their Princes reaps so much renown and a name 
so great, when he surpasses in the number and magna- 
nimity of his followers. For such are courted by Em- 
bassies, and distinguished with presents, and by the terror 
of their fame alone often dissipate wars. 

In the day of battle, it is scandalous to the Prince to 
be surpassed in feats of bravery, scandalous to his followers 
to fail in matching the bravery of the Prince. But it is 
infamy during life, and indelible reproach, to return alive 
from a battle where their Prince was slain. To preserve 
their Prince, to defend him, and to ascribe to his glory all 
their own valorous deeds, is the sum and most sacred part of 
their oath. The Princes fight for victory; for the Prince 
his followers fight. Many of the young nobility, when their 
own community' comes to languish in its vigour by long 
peace and inactivity, betake themselves through impatience 
to other States which then prove to be in war. For, besides 
that this people cannot brook repose, besides that by perilous 
adventures they more quickly blazon their fame, they can- 
not otherwise than by violence and war support their huge 
train of retainers. For from the liberality of their Prince, 
they demand and enjoy that war-horse of theirs, with that 
victorious javelin dyed in the blood of their enemies. In 
the place of pay, they are supplied with a daily table and 
repasts; though grossly prepared, yet ver}' profuse. For 
maintaining such liberality and munificence, a fund is fur- 
nished by continual wars and plunder. Nor could you so 
easily persuade them to cultivate the ground, or to await 
the return of the seasons and produce of the year, as to 
provoke the foe and to risk wounds and death : since stupid 
and spiritless they account it, to acquire by their sweat what 
they can gain by their blood. 


Upon any recess from Avar, they do not much attend the 
chase. Much more of their time they pass in indolence, 
resigned to sleep and repasts.* All the most brave, all 
the most warlike, apply to nothing at all ; but to their w^ives, 
to the ancient men, and to every the most impotent domestic, 
trust all the care of their house, and of their lands and pos- 
sessions. They themselves loiter.^ Such is the amazing 
diversity of their nature, that in the same men is found so 
much delight in sloth, vv^ith so much enmity to tranquillity 
and repose. The communities are v^^ont, of their ow^n 
accord and man by man, to bestow upon their Princes a 
certain number of beasts, or a certain portion of grain; 
a contribution which passes indeed for a mark of reverence 
and honour, but serves also to supply their necessities. 
They chiefly rejoice in the gifts which come from the 
bordering countries, such as are sent not only by particulars 
but in the name of the State; curious horses, splendid 
armour, rich harness, with collars of silver and gold. Now 
too they have learnt, what we have taught them, to receive 

That none of the several people in Germany live together 
in cities, is abundantly known; nay, that amongst them 
none of their dwellings are suffered to be contiguous. They 
inhabit apart and distinct, just as a fountain, or a field, or 
a wood happened to invite them to settle. They raise their 
villages in opposite rows, but not in our manner with the 
houses joined one to another. Every man has a vacant 
space quite round his own, whether for security against 
accidents from fire, or that they want the art of building. 
With them in truth, is unknown even the use of mortar 
and of tiles. In all their structures they employ materials 
quite gross and unhewn, void of fashion and comeliness. 
Some parts they besmear with an earth so pure and re- 
splendent, that it resembles painting and colours. They 
are likewise wont to scoop caves deep in the ground, and 
over them to lay great heaps of dung. Thither they retire 
for shelter in the winter, and thither convey their grain: 
for by such close places they mollify the rigorous and ex- 

*" Dediti somno, ciboque: " handed over to sloth and gluttony. 
ε Are rude and lazy. 


cessive cold. Besides when at any time their enemy in- 
vades them, he can only ravage the open country, but 
either knows not such recesses as are invisible and sub- 
terraneous; or must suffer them to escape him, on this 
very account that he is uncertain where to find them. 

For their covering a mantle is what they all wear, 
fastened with a clasp or, for want of it, with a thorn. As 
far as this reaches not they are naked, and lie whole days 
before the fire. The most wealthy are distinguished with 
a vest, not one large and flowing like those of Sarmatians 
and Parthians, but girt close about them and expressing the 
proportion of every limb. They likewise wear the skins 
of savage beasts, a dress which those bordering upon the 
Rhine use without any fondness or delicacy, but about 
which such who live further in the country are more 
curious, as void of all apparel introduced by commerce. 
They choose certain wild beasts, and, having flayed them, 
diversify their hides with many spots, as also with the 
skins of monsters from the deep, such as are engendered 
in the distant ocean and in seas unknown. Neither does the 
dress of the women differ from that of the men, save that 
the women are orderly attired in linen embroidered with 
purple, and use no sleeves, so that all their arms are bare. 
The upper part of their breast is withal exposed. 

Yet the laws of matrimony are severely observed there; 
nor in the whole of their manners is aught more praise- 
worthy than this: for they are almost the only Barbarians 
contented with one wife, excepting a very few amongst 
them; men of dignity who marry divers wives, from no 
wantonness or lubricity, but courted for the lustre of their 
family into many alliances. 

To the husband, the wife tenders no dowry; but the 
husband, to the wife. The parents and relations attend 
and declare their approbation of the presents, not presents 
adapted to feminine pomp and delicacy, nor such as serve 
to deck the new married woman ; but oxen and horse ac- 
coutred, and a shield, with a javelin and sword. By virtue 
of these gifts, she is espoused. She too on her part brings 
her husband some arms. This they esteem the highest tie, 
these the holy mysteries, and matrimonial Gods. That the 


woman may not suppose herself free from the considera- 
tions of fortitude and fighting, or exempt from the 
casualties of war, the very first solemnities of her wedding 
serve to warn her, that she comes to her husband as a 
partner in his hazards and fatigues, that she is to suffer 
alike with him, to adventure alike, during peace or during 
war. This the oxen joined in the same yoke plainly indi- 
cate, this the horse ready equipped, this the present of 
arms. 'Tis thus she must be content to live, thus to resign 
life. The arms which she then receives she must preserve 
inviolate, and to her sons restore the same, as presents 
worthy of them, such as their wives may again receive, and 
still resign to her grandchildren. 

They therefore live in a state of chastity well secured; 
corrupted by no seducing shows and public diversions, by 
no irritations from banqueting. Of learning and of any 
secret intercourse by letters, they are all equally ignorant, 
men and women. Amongst a people so numerous, adultery 
is exceeding rare; a crime instantly punished, and the 
punishment left to be inflicted by the husband. He, having 
cut off her hair, expells her from his house naked, in 
presence of her kindred, and pursues her with stripes 
throughout the village. For, to a woman who has pros- 
tituted her person, no pardon is ever granted. However 
beautiful she be, however young, however abounding in 
wealth, a husband she can never find. In truth, nobody 
turns vices into mirth there, nor is the practice of corrupt- 
ing and of yielding to corruption, called the custom of the 
Age. Better still do those communities, in which none but 
virgins marry, and where to a single marriage all their 
views and inclinations are at once confined. Thus, as they 
have but one body and one life, they take but one husband, 
that beyond him they may have no thought, no further 
wishes, nor love him only as their husband but as their 
marriage.* To restrain generation and the increase of 
children, is esteemed an abominable sin, as also to kill 
infants newly born. And more powerful with them are 
good manners, than with other people are good laws. 

In all their houses the children are reared naked and 

* " Sed tamquam matrimonium ament." 


nasty; and thus grow into those limbs, into that bulk, 
which with marvel we behold. They are all nourished with 
the milk of their own mothers, and never surrendered to 
handmaids and nurses. The lord you cannot discern from 
the slave, by any superior delicacy in rearing. Amongst 
the same cattle they promiscuously live, upon the same 
ground they without distinction lie, till at a proper age the 
free-born are parted from the rest, and their bravery recom- 
mend them to notice. Slow and late do the young men 
come to the use of women, and thus very long preserve the 
vigour of youth. Neither are the virgins hastened to wed. 
They must both have the same sprightly youth, the like 
stature, and marry when equal and able-bodied. Thus the 
robustness of the parents is inherited by the children. 
Children are holden in the same estimation with their 
mother's brother, as with their father. Some hold this 
tie of blood to be most inviolable and binding, and in re- 
ceiving of hostages, such pledges are most considered and 
claimed, as they who at once possess affections the most 
unalienable, and the most diffuse interest in their family. 
To every man, however, his own children are heirs and suc- 
cessors: wills they make none: for want of children his 
next akin inherits ; his own brothers, those of his father, 
or those of his mother. To ancient men, the more they 
abound in descendants, in relations and affinities, so much 
the more favour and reverence accrues. From being child- 
less, no advantage nor estimation is derived. 

All the enmities of your house, whether of your father 
or of your kindred, you must necessarily adopt ; as well as 
all their friendships. Neither are such enmities unap- 
peasable and permanent: since even for so great a crime 
as homicide, compensation is made by a fixed number of 
sheep and cattle, and by it the whole family is pacified to 
content. A temper this, wholesome to the State; because 
to a free nation, animosities and faction are always more 
menacing and perilous. In social feasts, and deeds of 
hospitality, no nation upon earth was ever more liberal and 
abounding. To refuse admitting under your roof any 
man whatsoever, is held wicked and inhuman. Every man 
receives every comer, and treats him with repasts as large 


as his ability can possibly furnish. When the whole stock 
is consumed, he who had treated so hospitably guides and 
accompanies his guest to a new scene of hospitality; and 
both proceed to the next house, though neither of them 
invited. Nor avails it, that they were not: they are there 
received, with the same frankness and humanity. Be- 
tween a stranger and an acquaintance, in dispensing the 
rules and benefits of hospitality, no difference is made. 
Upon your departure, if you ask anything, it is the custom 
to grant it; and with the same facility, they ask of you. 
In gifts they delight, but neither claim merit from what 
they give, nor own any obligation for what they receive. 
Their manner of entertaining their guests is familiar and 

The moment they rise from sleep, which they generally 
prolong till late in the day, they bathe, most frequently in 
warm water; as in a country where the winter is very 
long and severe. From bathing, they sit down to meat; 
every man apart, upon a particular seat, and at a separate 
table. They then proceed to their affairs, all in arms; 
as in arms, they no less frequently go to banquet. To con- 
tinue drinking night and day without intermission, is a 
reproach to no man. Frequent then are their broils, as 
usual amongst men intoxicated with liquor; and such broils 
rarely terminate in angry words, but for the most part in 
maimings and slaughter. Moreover in these their feasts, 
they generally deliberate about reconciling parties at 
enmity, about forming affinities, choosing of Princes, and 
finally about peace and war. For they judge, that at no 
season is the soul more open to thoughts that are artless 
and upright, or more fired with such as are great and bold. 
This people, of themselves nowise subtile or politic, from 
the freedom of the place and occasion acquire still more 
frankness to disclose the most secret motions and purposes 
of their hearts. When therefore the minds of all have been 
once laid open and declared, on the day following the several 
sentiments are revised and canvassed; and to both con- 
jectures of time, due regard is had. They consult, when 
they know not how to dissemble ; they determine, when they 
cannot mistake. 


For their drink, they draw a liquor from barley or other 
grain ; and ferment the same, so. as to make it resemble wine. 
Nay, they who dwell upon the bank of the Rhine deal in 
wine. Their food is very simple ; wild fruit, fresh venison, 
or coagulated milk. They banish hunger without formality, 
without curious dressing and curious fare. In extinguishing 
thirst, they use not equal temperance. If you will but hu- 
mour their excess in drinking, and supply them with as much 
as they covet, it will be no less easy to vanquish them by 
vices than by arms. 

Of public diversions they have but one sort, and in all 
their meetings the same is still exhibited. Young men, such 
as make it their pastime, fling themselves naked and dance 
amongst sharp swords and the deadly points of javelins. 
From habit they acquire their skill, and from their skill a 
graceful manner; yet from hence draw no gain or hire: 
though this adventurous gaiety has its reward, namely, that 
of pleasing the spectators. What is marvellous, playing at 
dice is one of their most serious employments ; and even 
sober, they are gamesters: nay, so desperately do they ven- 
ture upon the chance of winning or losing, that when their 
whole substance is played away, they stake their liberty and 
their persons upon one and the last throw. The loser goes 
calmly into voluntary bondage. However younger he be, 
however stronger, he tamely suffers himself to be bound and 
sold by the winner. Such is their perseverance in an evil 
course: they themselves call it honour. 

Slaves of this class, they exchange away in commerce, to 
free themselves too from the shame of such a victory. Of 
their other slaves they make not such use as we do of ours, 
by distributing amongst them the several offices and employ- 
ments of the family. Each of them has a dwelling of his 
own, each a household to govern. His lord uses him like a 
tenant, and obliges him to pay a quantity of grain, or of 
cattle, or of cloth. Thus far only the subserviency of the 
slave extends. All the other duties in a family, not the 
slaves, but the wives and children discharge. To inflict 
stripes upon a slave, or to put him in chains, or to doom 
him to severe labour, are things rarely seen. To kill them 
they sometimes are wont, not through correction or govern- 


ment, but in heat and rage, as they would an enemy, save 
that no vengeance or penalty follows. The freedmen very 
little surpass the slaves, rarely are of moment in the house; 
in the community never, excepting only such nations where 
arbitrary dominion prevails. For there they bear higher 
sway than the free-born, nay, higher than the nobles. In 
other countries the inferior condition of freedmen is a proof 
of public liberty. 

To the practice of usury and of increasing money by in- 
terest, they are strangers; and hence is found a better guard 
against it, than if it were forbidden. They shift from land 
to land; and, still appropriating a portion suitable to the 
number of hands for manuring, anon parcel out the whole 
amongst particulars according to the condition and quality 
of each. As the plains are very spacious, the allotments are 
easily assigned. Every year they change, and cultivate a 
fresh soil ; yet still there is ground to spare. For they strive 
not to bestow labour proportionable to the fertility and com- 
pass of their lands, by planting orchards, by enclosing mead- 
ows, by watering gardens. From the earth, corn only is 
exacted. Hence they quarter not the year into so many 
seasons. Winter, Spring, and Summer, they understand; 
and for each have proper appellations. Of the name and 
blessings of Autumn, they are equally ignorant. 

In performing their funerals, they show no state or vain- 
glory. This only is carefully observed, that with the corpses 
of their signal men certain woods be burned. Upon the 
funeral pile they accumulate neither apparel nor perfumes. 
Into the fire, are always thrown the arms of the dead, and 
sometimes his horse. With sods of earth only the sepulchre 
is raised. The pomp of tedious and elaborate monuments 
they contemn, as things grievous to the deceased. Tears and 
wailings they soon dismiss: their affliction and woe they 
long retain. In women, it is reckoned becoming to bewail 
their loss; in men, to remember it. This is what in general 
we have learned, in the original and customs of the whole 
people of Germany. I shall now deduce the institutions and 
usages of the several people, as far as they vary one from 
another; as also an account of what nations from thence 
removed, to settle themselves in Gaul. 


That the Gauls were in times past more puissant and for- 
midable, is related by the Prince of authors, the deified 
Julius ;'' and hence it is probable that they too have passed 
into Germany. For what a small obstacle must be a river, 
to restrain any nation, as each grew more potent, from seiz- 
ing or changing habitations; when as yet all habitations 
were common, and not parted or appropriated by the found- 
ing and terror of Monarchies? The region therefore be- 
tween the Hercynian Forest and the rivers Moenus® and 
Rhine, was occupied by the Helvetians; as was that beyond 
it by the Boians, both nations of Gaul. There still remains 
a place called Boiemum, which denotes the primitive name 
and antiquity of the country, although the inhabitants have 
been changed. But whether the Araviscans are derived 
from the Osians, a nation of Germans passing into Pan- 
nonia, or the Osians from the Araviscans removing from 
thence into Germany, is a matter undecided ; since they both 
still use the language, the same customs' and the same laws. 
For, as of old they lived alike poor and alike free, equal 
proved the evils and advantages on each side the river, and 
common to both people. The Treverians and Nervians as- 
pire passionately to the reputation of being descended from 
the Germans; since by the glory of this original, they would 
escape all imputation of resembling the Gauls in person and 
effeminacy. Such as dwell upon the bank of the Rhine, the 
Vangiones, the Tribocians, and the Nemetes, are without 
doubt all Germans. The Ubians are ashamed of their orig- 
inal ; though they have a particular honour to boast, that of 
having merited an establishment as a Roman Colony, and still 
delight to be called Agrippinensians, after the name of their 
founder : they indeed formerly came from beyond the Rhine, 
and, for the many proofs of their fidelity, were settled upon 
the very bank of the river; not to be there confined or 
guarded themselves, but to guard and defend that boundary 
against the rest of the Germans. 

Of all these nations, the Batavians are the most signal in 
bravery. They inhabit not much territory upon the Rhine, 
but possess an island in it. They were formerly part of the 
Cattans, and by means of feuds at home removed to these 

' Julius Caesar. ^ Main. 


dwellings; whence they might become a portion of the 
Roman Empire. With them this honour still remains, as 
also the memorials of their ancient association with us: for 
they are not under the contempt of paying tribute, nor sub- 
ject to be squeezed by the farmers of the revenue. Free 
from all impositions and payments, and only set apart for the 
purposes of fighting, they are reserved wholly for the wars, 
in the same manner as a magazine of weapons and armour. 
Under the same degree of homage are the nation of the Mat- 
tiacians. For such is the might and greatness of the Roman 
People, as to have carried the awe and esteem of their 
Empire beyond the Rhine and the ancient boundaries. Thus 
the Mattiacians, living upon the opposite banks, enjoy a 
settlement and limits of their own; yet in spirit and inclina- 
tion are attached to us: in other things resembling the 
Batavians, save that as they still breathe their original air, 
still possess their primitive soil, they are thence inspired 
with superior vigour and keenness. Amongst the people of 
Germany I would not reckon those who occupy the lands 
which are under decimation, though they be such as dwell be- 
yond the Rhine and the Danube. By several worthless and 
vagabond Gauls, and such as poverty rendered daring, that 
region was seized as one belonging to no certain possessor: 
afterwards it became a skirt of the Empire and part of a 
province, upon the enlargement of our bounds and the ex- 
tending of our garrisons and frontier. 

Beyond these are the Cattans, whose territories begin at the 
Hercynian Forest, and consist not of such wide and marshy 
plains, as those of the other communities contained within 
the vast compass of Germany; but produce ranges of hills, 
such as run lofty and contiguous for a long tract, then by 
degrees sink and decay. Moreover the Hercynian Forest 
attends for a while its native Cattans, then suddenly for- 
sakes them. This people are distinguished with bodies more 
hardy and robust, compact limbs, stern countenances, and 
greater vigour of spirit. For Germans, they are men of 
much sense and address.® They dignify chosen men, listen 
to such as are set over them, know how to preserve their 
post, to discern occasions, to rebate their own ardour and 
• " Leur intelligence et leur finesse etonnent, dans des Germains." 


impatience; how to employ the day, how to entrench them- 
selves by night. They account fortune amongst things 
slippery and uncertain, but bravery amongst such as are 
never- failmg and secure; and, what is exceeding rare nor 
ever to be learnt but by a wholesome course of discipline, in 
the conduct of the general they repose more assurance than 
in the strength of the army. Their whole forces consist of 
foot, who besides their arms carry likewise instruments of 
iron and their provisions. You may see other Germans 
proceed equipped to battle, but the Cattans so as to conduct 
a war.^" They rarely venture upon excursions or casual 
encounters. It is in truth peculiar to cavalry, suddenly to 
conquer, or suddenly to fly. Such haste and velocity rather 
resembles fear. Patience and deliberation are more akin to 

Moreover a custom, practised indeed in other nations of 
Germany, yet very rarely and confined only to particulars 
more daring than the rest, prevails amongst the Cattans by 
universal consent. As soon as they arrive to maturity of 
years, they let their hair and beards continue to grow, nor 
till they have slain an enemy do they ever lay aside this 
form of countenance by vow sacred to valour. Over the 
blood and spoil of a foe they make bare their face. They 
allege, that they have now acquitted themselves of the debt 
and duty contracted by their birth, and rendered themselves 
worthy of their country, worthy of their parents. Upon the 
spiritless, cowardly and unwarlike, such deformity of visage 
still remains." All the most brave likewise wear an iron 
ring (a mark of great dishonour this in that nation) and 
retain it as a chain ; till by killing an enemy they become re- 
leased. Many of the Cattans delight always to bear this 
terrible aspect; and, when grown white through age, become 
awful and conspicuous by such marks, both to the enemy and 
their own countrymen. By them in all engagements the first 
assault is made: of them the front of the battle is always 
composed, as men who in their looks are singular and tre- 
mendous. For even during peace they abate nothing in the 
grimness and horror of their countenance. They have no 

""Alios ad proelium ire videas, Chattos ad bellum." 
" " Manet squalor." 


house to inhabit, no land to cultivate, nor any domestic charge 
or care. With whomsoever they come to sojourn, by him 
they are maintained ; alw^ays very prodigal of the substance 
of others, always despising what is their own, till the feeble- 
ness of old age overtakes them, and renders them unequal 
to the efforts of such rigid bravery. 

Next to the Cattans, dwell the Usipians and Tencterians; 
upon the Rhine now running in a channel uniform and cer- 
tain, such as suffices for a boundary. The Tencterians, be- 
sides their wonted glory in war, surpass in the service and 
discipline of their cavalry. Nor do the Cattans derive 
higher applause from their foot, than the Tencterians from 
their horse. Such was the order established by their fore- 
fathers, and what their posterity still pursue. From riding 
and exercising of horses, their children borrow their pas- 
times ; in this exercise the young men find matter for emu- 
lating one another, and in this the old men take pleasure to 
persevere. Horses are by the father bequeathed as part of 
his household and family, horses are conveyed amongst the 
rights of succession, and as such the son receives them; but 
not the eldest son, like other effects, by priority of birth, but 
he who happens to be signal in boldness and superior in war. 

Contiguous to the Tencterians formerly dwelt the Bruc- 
terians, in whose room it is said the Chamavians and Angri- 
varians are now settled; they who expulsed and almost ex- 
tirpated the Bructerians, with the concurrence of the neigh- 
bouring nations : whether in detestation of their arrogance, 
or allured by the love of spoil, or through the special favour 
of the Gods towards us Romans. They in truth even vouch- 
safed to gratify us with the sight of the battle. In it there 
fell above sixty thousand souls, without a blow struck by 
the Romans ; but, what is a circumstance still more glorious, 
fell to furnish them with a spectacle of joy and recreation. 
May the Gods continue and perpetuate amongst these na- 
tions, if not any love for us, yet by all means this their 
animosity and hate towards each other: since whilst the 
destiny of the Empire thus urges it, fortune cannot more 
signally befriend us, than in sowing strife amongst our foes. 

The Angrivarians and Chamavians are enclosed behind, 
by the Dulgibinians and Chasuarians; and by other nations 


not so much noted: before, the Frisians face them. The 
country of Frisia is divided into two ; called the greater and 
lesser, according to the measure of their strength. Both 
nations stretch along the Rhine, quite to the ocean ; and 
surround vast lakes such as once have borne Roman fleets. 
We have moreover even ventured out from thence into the 
ocean, and upon its coasts common fame has reported the 
pillars of Hercules to be still standing: whether it be that 
Hercules ever visited these parts, or that to his renowned 
name we are wont to ascribe whatever is grand and glorious 
everywhere. Neither did Drusus who made the attempt, 
want boldness to pursue it: but the roughness of the ocean 
withstood him, nor would suffer discoveries to be made 
about itself, no more than about Hercules. Thenceforward 
the enterprise was dropped : nay, more pious and reverential 
it seemed, to believe the marvellous feats of the Gods than 
to know and to prove them." 

Hitherto, I have been describing Germany towards the 
west. To the northward, it winds away with an immense 
compass. And first of all occurs the nation of the Chau- 
cians: who though they begin immediately at the confines 
of the Frisians, and occupy part of the shore, extend so far 
as to border upon all the several people whom I have al- 
ready recounted; till at last, by a Circuit, they reach quite 
to the boundaries of the Cattans. A region so vast, the 
Chaucians do not only possess but fill; a people of all the 
Germans the most noble, such as would rather maintain 
their grandeur by justice than violence. They live in repose, 
retired from broils abroad, void of avidity to possess more, 
free from a spirit of domineering over others. They pro- 
voke no wars, they ravage no countries, they pursue no 
plunder. Of their bravery and power, the chief evidence 
arises from hence, that, without wronging or oppressing 
others, they are come to be superior to all. Yet they are all 
ready to arm, and if an exigency require, armies are pres- 
ently raised, powerful and abounding as they are in men 
and horses ; and even when they are quiet and their weapons 
laid aside, their credit and name continue equally high. 

Along the side of the Chaucians and Cattans dwell the 

^ " Ccelum ipsutn petimus stultitia." 


Cheruscans; a people who finding no enemy to rouse theii^, 
were enfeebled by a peace over lasting and uniform, but 
such as they failed not to nourish. A conduct which proved 
more pleasing than secure ; since treacherous is that repose 
which you enjoy amongst neighbours that are very powerful 
and very fond of rule and mastership. When recourse is 
once had to the sword, modesty and fair dealing will be 
vainly pleaded by the weaker ; names these which are always 
assumed by the stronger. Thus the Cheruscans, they who 
formerly bore the character of good and upright, are now 
called cowards and fools; and the fortune of the Cattans 
who subdued them, grew immediately to be wisdom. In the 
ruin of the Cheruscans, the Fosians, also their neighbours, 
were involved; and in their calamities bore an equal share, 
though in their prosperity they had been weaker and less 

In the same winding tract of Germany live the Cimbrians, 
close to the ocean ; a community now very small, but great 
in fame. Nay, of their ancient renown, many and extensive 
are the traces and monuments still remaining; even their 
entrenchments upon either shore, so vast in compass that 
from thence you may even now measure the greatness and 
numerous bands of that people, and assent to the account 
of an army so mighty. It was on the six hundred and for- 
tieth year of Rome, when of the arms of the Cimbrians the 
first mention was made, during the Consulship of Csecilius 
Metellus and Papirius Carbo. If from that time we count 
to the second Consulship of the Emperor Trajan, the in- 
terval comprehends near two hundred and ten years; so 
long have we been conquering Germany. In a course of 
time, so vast between these two periods, many have been 
the blows and disasters sui¥ered on each side. In truth 
neither from the Samnites, nor from the Carthaginians, nor 
from both Spains, nor from all the nations of Gaul, have 
we received more frequent checks and alarms ; nor even 
from the Parthians : for, more vigorous and invincible is 
the liberty of the Germans than the monarchy of the Arsa- 
cides. Indeed, what has the power of the East to allege to 
our dishonour; but the fall of Crassus, that power which 
was itself overthrown and abased by Ventidius, with the 


loss of the great King Pacorus bereft of his life? But by 
the Germans the Roman People have been bereft of five 
armies, all commanded by Consuls; by the Germans, the 
commanders of these armies, Carbo, and Cassius, and 
Scaurus Aurelius, and Servilius Csepio, as also Marcus Man- 
lius, were all routed or taken: by the Germans even the 
Emperor Augustus was bereft of Varus and three legions. 
Nor without difficulty and loss of men were they defeated 
by Caius Marius in Italy, or by the deified Julius in Gaul, 
or by Drusus or Tiberius or Germanicus in their native ter- 
ritories. Soon after, the mighty menaces of Caligula 
against them ended in mockery and derision. Thencefor- 
ward they continued quiet, till taking advantage of our 
domestic division and civil Λvars, they stormed and seized 
the winter entrenchments of the legions, and aimed at the 
dominion of Gaul ; from whence they were once more ex- 
pulsed, and in the times preceding the present, we gained 
a triumph over them rather than a victory. 

I must now proceed to speak of the Suevians, who arc 
not, like the Cattans and Tencterians, comprehended in a 
single people ; but divided into several nations all bearing 
distinct names, though in general they are entitled Suevians, 
and occupy the larger share of Germany. This people are 
remarkable for a peculiar custom, that of twisting their hair 
and binding it up in a knot. It is thus the Suevians are 
distinguished from the other Germans, thus the free 
Suevians from their slaves. In other nations, whether from 
alliance of blood with the Suevians, or, as is usual, from 
imitation, this practice is also found, yet rarely, and never 
exceeds the years of youth. The Suevians, even when their 
hair is white through age, continue to raise it backwards 
in a manner stern and staring; and often tie it upon the 
top of their head only. That of their Princes, is more ac- 
curately disposed, and so far they study to appear agreeable 
and comely ; but without any culpable intention. For by it, 
they mean not to make love or to incite it: they thus dress 
when proceeding to war, and deck their heads so as to add 
to their height and terror in the eyes of the enemy. 

Of all the Suevians, the Semnones recount themselves to 
be the most ancient and most noble. The belief of their 


antiquity is confirmed by religious mysteries. 'At a stated 
time of the year, all the several people descended from the 
same stock, assemble by their deputies in a wood; conse- 
crated by the idolatries of their forefathers, and by super- 
stitious awe in times of old. There by publicly sacrificing 
a man, they begin the horrible solemnity of their barbarous 
worship. To this grove another sort of reverence is also 
paid. No one enters it otherwise than bound with ligatures, 
thence professing his subordination and meanness, and the 
power of the Deity there. If he fall down, he is not per- 
mitted to rise or be raised, but grovels along upon the 
ground. And of all their superstition, this is the drift and 
tendency; that from this place the nation drew their orig- 
inal, that here God, the supreme Governor of the world, 
resides, and that all things else whatsoever are subject to 
him and bound to obey him. The potent condition of the 
Semnones has increased their influence and authority, as 
they inhabit an hundred towns; and from the largeness of 
their community it comes, that they hold themselves for the 
head of the Suevians. 

What on the contrary ennobles the Langobards is the 
smallness of their number, for that they, who are sur- 
rounded with very many and very powerful nations, derive 
their security from no obsequiousness or plying; but from 
the dint of battle and adventurous deeds. There follow in 
order the Reudignians, and Aviones, and Angles, and Var- 
inians, and Eudoses, and Suardones and Nuithones; all de- 
fended by rivers or forests. Nor in one of these nations 
does aught remarkable occur, only that they universally join 
in the worship of Herthiim; that is to say, the Mother 
Earth. Her they believe to interpose in the affairs of men, 
and to visit countries. In an island of the ocean stands the 
wood Castum: in it is a chariot dedicated to the Goddess, 
covered over with a curtain, and permitted to be touched 
by none but the Priest. Whenever the Goddess enters 
this her holy vehicle, he perceives her; and with profound 
veneration attends the motion of the chariot, which is always 
drawn by yoked cows. Then it is that days of rejoicing 
always ensue, and in all places whatsoever which she de- 
scends to honour with a visit and her company, feasts and 


recreation abound. They go not to war; they touch no 
arms; fast laid up is every hostile weapon; peace and re- 
pose are then only known, then only beloved, till to the 
temple the same priest reconducts the Goddess when well 
tired with the conversation of mortal beings. Anon the 
chariot is washed and purified in a secret lake, as also the 
curtains; nay, the Deity herself too, if you choose to believe 
it. In this office it is slaves who minister, and they are 
forthwith doomed to be swallowed up in the same lake. 
Hence all men are possessed with mysterious terror ; as well 
as with a holy ignorance what that must be, which none see 
but such as are immediately to perish. Moreover this quar- 
ter of the Suevians stretches to the middle of Germany. 

The community next adjoining, is that of the Hermondu- 
rians; (that I may now follow the course of the Danube, 
as a little before I did that of the Rhine) a people this, 
faithful to the Romans. So that to them alone of all the 
Germans, commerce is permitted; not barely upon the bank 
of the Rhine, but more extensively, and even in that glorious 
colony in the province of Rhostia. They travel everywhere 
at their own discretion and without a guard; and when to 
other nations, we show no more than our arms and en- 
campments, to this people we throw open our houses and 
dwellings, as to men who have, no longing to possess them. 
In the territories of the Hermondurians rises the Elbe, a 
river very famous and formerly well known to us ; at present 
we only hear it named. 

Close by the Hermondurians reside the Nariscans, and 
next to them the Marcomanians and Ouadians. Amongst 
these the Marcomanians are most signal in force and re- 
nown; nay, their habitation itself they acquired by their 
bravery, as from thence they formerly expulsed the Boians. 
Nor do the Nariscans or Quadians degenerate in spirit. 
Now this is as it were the frontier of Germany, as far as 
Germany is washed by the Danube. To the times within 
our memory the Marcomanians and Quadians were governed 
by kings, who were natives of their own, descended from 
the noble line of Maroboduus and Tudrus. At present they 
are even subject to such as are foreigners. But the whole 
Strength and sway of their kings is derived from the au- 


thority of the Romans. From our arms, they rarely receive 
any aid; from our money very frequently. 

Nor less powerful are the several people beyond them; 
namely, the Marsignians, the Gothinians, the Osians and the 
Burians, who altogether enclose the Marcomanians and 
Quadians behind. Of those, the Marsignians and the Burians 
in speech and dress resemble the Suevians. From the Gallic 
language spoken by the Gothinians, and from that of Pan- 
nonia by the Osians, it is manifest that neither of these 
people are Germans ; as it is also from their bearing to pay 
tribute. Upon them as upon aliens their tribute is imposed, 
partly by the Sarmatians, partly by the Quadians. The 
Gothinians, to heighten their disgrace, are forced to labour 
in the iron mines. By all these several nations but little 
level country is possessed: they are seated amongst forests, 
and upon the ridges and declivities of mountains. For, 
Suevia is parted by a continual ridge of mountains ; beyond 
which, live many distinct nations. Of these the Lygians are 
most numerous and extensive, and spread into several com- 
munities. It will suffice to mention the most puissant ; even 
the Arians, Helvicones, Manimians ; Elysians and Naharval- 
ians. Amongst the Naharvalians is shown a grove, sacred 
to devotion extremely ancient. Over it a Priest presides 
apparelled like a woman ; but according to the explication of 
the Romans, 'tis Castor and Pollux who are here worshipped. 
This Divinity is named Aids. There are indeed no images 
here, no traces of an extraneous superstition: yet their devo- 
tion is addressed to young men and to brothers. Now the 
Aryans, besides their forces, in which they surpass the sev- 
eral nations just recounted, are in their persons stern and 
truculent ; and even humour and improve their natural grim- 
ness and ferocity by art and time. They wear black shields, 
their bodies are painted black, they choose dark nights for 
engaging in battle ; and by the very awe and ghastly hue of 
their army, strike the enemy with dread, as none can bear 
this their aspect so surprising and as it were quite infernal. 
For, in all battles the eyes are vanquished first. 

Beyond the Lygians dwell the Gothones, under the rule of 
a King; and thence held in subjection somewhat stricter than 
the other German nations, yet not so strict as to extinguish 


all their liberty. Immediately adjoining are the Rugians and 
Lemovians upon the coast of the ocean, and of these several 
nations the characteristics are a round shield, a short sword 
and kingly government. Next occur the communities of the 
Suiones, situated in the ocean itself; and besides their 
strength in men and arms, very powerful at sea. The form 
of their vessels varies thus far from ours, that they have 
prows at each end, so as to be always ready to row to shore 
without turning nor are they moved by sails, nor on their 
sides have benches of oars placed, but the rowers ply here 
and there in all parts of the ship alike, as in some rivers is 
done, and change their oars from place to place, just as they 
shift their course hither or thither. To wealth also, amongst 
them, great veneration is paid, and thence a single ruler 
governs them, without all restriction of power, and exacting 
unlimited obedience. Neither here, as amongst other nations 
of Germany, are arms used indifferently by all, but shut 
up and warded under the care of a particular keeper, who 
in truth too is always a slave: since from all sudden in- 
vasions and attacks from their foes, the ocean protects 
them: besides that armed bands, when they are not em- 
ployed, grow easily debauched and tumultuous. The truth 
is, it suits not the interest of an arbitrary Prince, to trust 
the care and power of arms either with a nobleman or with 
a freeman, or indeed with any man above the condition of 
a slave. 

Beyond the Suiones is another sea, one very heavy and 
almost void of agitation; and by it the whole globe is thought 
to be bounded and environed, for that the reflection of the 
sun, after his setting, continues till his rising, so bright as 
to darken the stars. To this, popular opinion has added, 
that the tumult also of his emerging from the sea is heard, 
that forms divine are then seen, as likewise the rays about 
his head. Only thus far extend the limits of nature, if 
what fame says be true. Upon the right of the Suevian 
Sea the ./Estyan nations reside, who use the same customs 
and attire with the Suevians; their language more resem- 
bles that of Britain. They worship the Mother of the Gods. 
As the characteristic of their national superstition, they 
wear the images of wild boars. This alone serves them 


for arms, this is the safeguard of all, and by this every wor- 
shipper of the Goddess is secured even amidst his foes. 
Rare amongst them is the use of weapons of iron, but fre- 
quent that of clubs. In producing of grain and the other 
fruits of the earth, they labour with more assiduity and 
patience than is suitable to the usual laziness of Germans. 
Nay, they even search the deep, and of all the rest are 
the only people who gather amber. They call it glasing, 
and find it amongst the shallows and upon the very shore. 
But, according to the ordinary incuriosity and ignorance of 
Barbarians, they have neither learnt, nor do they inquire, 
what is its nature, or from what cause it is produced. In 
truth it lay long neglected amongst the other gross dis- 
charges of the sea; till from our luxury, it gained a name 
and value. To themselves it is of no use: they gather it 
rough, they expose it in pieces coarse and unpolished, and 
for it receive a price with wonder. You would however 
conceive it to be a liquor issuing from trees, for that in the 
transparent substance are often seen birds and other ani- 
mals, such as at first stuck in the soft gum, and by it, as 
it hardened, became quite enclosed. I am apt to believe 
that, as in the recesses of the East are found woods and 
groves dropping frankincense and balms, so in the isles and 
continent of the West such gums are extracted by the force 
and proximity of the sun; at first liquid and flowing into 
the next sea, then thrown by winds and waves upon the 
opposite shore. If you try the nature of amber by the 
application of fire, it kindles like a torch; and feeds a thick 
and unctuous flame very high scented, and presently be- 
comes glutinous like pitch or rosin. 

Upon the Suiones, border the people Sitones; and, agree- 
ing with them in all other things, differ from them in one, 
that here the sovereignty is exercised by a woman. So 
notoriously do they degenerate not only from a state of 
liberty, but even below a state of bondage. Here end the 
territories of the Suevians. 

Whether amongst the Sarmatians or the Germans I ought 
to account the Peucinians, the Venedians, and the Fennians, 
is what I cannot determine; though the Peucinians, whom 
some call Basstarnians, speak the same language with the 


Germans, use the same attire, build like them, and live like 
them, in that dirtiness and sloth so common to all. Some- 
what they are corrupted into the fashion of the Sarmatians 
by the inter-marriages of the principal sort with that nation : 
from whence the Venedians have derived very many of their 
customs and a great resemblance. For they are continually 
traversing and infesting with robberies all the forests and 
mountains lying between the Peucinians and Fennians. 
Yet they are rather reckoned amongst the Germans, for that 
they have fixed houses, and carry shields, and prefer travel- 
ling on foot, and excel in swiftness. Usages these, all 
widely differing from those of the Sarmatians, who live 
on horseback and dwell in waggons. In wonderful savage- 
ness live the nation of the Fennians, and in beastly poverty, 
destitute of arms, of horses, and of homes ; their food, the 
common herbs ; their apparel, skins ; their bed, the earth ; 
their only hope in their arrows, which for want of iron 
they point with bones. Their common support they have 
from the chase, women as well as men; for with these the 
former wander up and down, and crave a portion of the 
prey. Nor other shelter have they even for their babes, 
against the violence of tempests and ravening beasts, than 
to cover them with the branches of trees twisted together; 
this a reception for the old men, and hither resort the 
young. Such a condition they judge more happy than the 
painful occupation of cultivating the ground, than the labour 
of rearing houses, than the agitations of hope and fear at- 
tending the defence of their own property or the seizing 
that of others. Secure against the designs of men, secure 
against the malignity of the Gods, they have accomplished 
a thing of infinite difficulty; that to them nothing remains 
even to be wished. 

What further accounts we have are fabulous: as that the 
Hellusians and Oxiones have the countenances and aspect of 
men, with the bodies and limbs of savage beasts. This, as a 
thing about which I have no certain information, I shall 
leave untouched. 



Sir Francis Drake, the greatest of the naval adventurers of 
England of the time of Elisabeth, was born in Devonshire about 
1540. He went to sea early, was sailing to the Spanish Main by 
15O5, Ofid commanded a ship under Hawkins in an expedition that 
was overwhelmed by the Spaniards in 1567. In order to recom- 
pense himself for the loss suffered in this disaster, he equipped 
the expedition against the Spanish treasure-house at Nombre de 
Dios in 1S72, the fortunes of which are described in the first of 
the two following narratives. It was on this voyage that he was 
led by native guides to "that goodly and great high tree" on the 
isthmus of Darien, from which, first of Englishmen, he looked 
ofi the Pacific, and "besought Almighty God of His goodness to 
give him life and leave to sail once in an English ship in that sea." 

The fulfilment of this prayer is described in the second of the 
voyages here printed, in which it is told how, in 1578, Drake 
passed through the Straits of Magellan into waters never before 
sailed by his countrymen, and with a single ship rifled the Spanish 
settlements on the west coast of South America and plundered 
the Spanish treasure-ships ; how, considering it unsafe to go back 
the way he came lest the enemy should seek revenge, he went as 
far north as the Golden Gate, then passed across the Pacific and 
round by the Cape of Good Hope, and so home, the first English- 
man to circumnavigate the globe. Only Magellan's ship had pre- 
ceded him in the feat, and Magellan had died on the voyage. The 
Queen visited the ship, "The Golden Hind," as she lay at Dept- 
ford and knighted the commander on board. 

Drake's further adventures were of almost equal interest. Re- 
turning from a raid on the Spaniards in 1586, he brought home 
the despairing Virginian colony, and is said at the same time to 
have introduced from America tobacco and potatoes. Two years 
later he led the English fleet in the decisive engagement with the 
Great Armada. In 1595 he set out on another voyage to the 
Spanish Main; and in the January of the following year died 
off Porto Bella and was buried in the waters where he had made 
his name as the greatest seaman of his day and nation. 


Sir Francis Drake 

Calling upon this dull or effeminate Age^ 
to follow his noble steps for gold and silver: 

By this memorable Relation of the rare occurrences 

(never yet declared to the world) in a Third Voyage 

made by him into the West Indies, in the years 

[15372 and [is]73 ; when Nombre de Dios was 

by him, and fifty-two others only in bi9 

company, surprised. 

Faithfully taken out of the report of Master 

Christopher Ceely, Exlis Hixom, and others, 

who were in the same Voyage with him j 

By Philip Nichols, Preacher. 

Reviewed also by Sir Francis Drake himself, 

before his death ; and much holpen and enlarged 

by divers notes, with his own hand, 

here and there inserted. 

Set forth by Sir Francis Drake, Baronet, 

(his nephew) now living. 


Printed by E. A. for Ν i c η ο L a s Bourne, 

dwelling at the South Entrance of the 
Royal Exchange. 1626. 

Facsimile of Title-page of First Edition 



KING, all the blessings of this, and a better life. 

Most Gracious Sovereign, 

That this brief Treatise is yours, both by right and by suc- 
cession, will appear by the Author's and Actor's ensuing Dedica- 
tion. To praise either the Mistress or the Servant, might justly 
incur the censure of Quis eos unquam saiius vituperavit; cither's 
worth having sufficiently blazed their fame. 

This Present loseth nothing, by glancing on former actions; 
and the observation of passed adventures may probably advan- 
tage future employments. C^sar wrote his own Commentaries; 
and this Doer was partly the Inditor. 

Neither is there wanting living testimony to confirm its truth. 

For his sake, then, cherish what is good ! and I shall will- 
ingly entertain check for what is amiss. Your favourable accept- 
ance may encourage my collecting of more neglected notes! 
However, though Virtue, as Lands, be not inheritable; yet hath 
he left of his Name, one that resolves, and therein joys to 
approve himself. 

Your most humble and loyal subject, 

Francis Drake [Bart.] 

HC — Vol. 33 (5) 

The Dedicatory Epistle, intended to 


Written by Sir Francis Drake, Deceased. 

To the Queen's most excellent Majesty, 
my most dread Sovereigno 


Seeing divers have diversely reported and written of these 
Voj^ages and Actions which I have attempted and made, every 
one endeavouring to bring to light whatsoever inklings or con- 
jectures they have had; whereby many untruths have been pub- 
lished, and the certain truth concealed: as [so] 1 have thought 
it necessary myself, as in a Card [c/iarC] to prick the principal 
points of the counsels taken, attempts made, and success had, 
during the whole course of my employment in these services 
against the Spaniard. Not as setting sail for maintaining my 
reputation in men's judgement, but only as sitting at helm, if occa- 
sion shall be, for conducting the like actions hereafter. So I 
have accounted it my duty, to present this Discourse to Your 
Majesty, as of right; either for itself being the firstfruits of 
your Servant's pen, or for the matter, being service done to Your 
Majesty by your poor vassal, against your great Enemy : at times, 
in such places, and after such sort as may seem strange to those 
that are not acquainted with the whole carriage thereof ; but will 
be a pleasing remembrance to Your Highness, who take the 
apparent height of the Almighty's favour towards you, by these 
events, as truest instruments. 



Humbly submitting myself to Your gracious censure, both in 
writing and presenting; that Posterity be not deprived of such 
help as may happily be gained hereby, and our present Age, 
at least, may be satisfied, in the rightfulness of these actions, 
which hitherto have been silenced : and Your Servant's labour not 
seem altogether lost, not only in travels by sea and land, but also 
in writing the Report thereof (a work to him no less trouble- 
some) yet made pleasant and sweet, in that it hath been, is, and 
shall be for Your Majesty's content; to whom I have devoted 
myself [and] live or die. 

Francis Drake [Knight]. 
January i, 1592 [i.e., 1593]. 


Honest Reader, 

Without apology, I desire thee, in this ensuing Discourse, to 
observe, with me, the power and justice of the LORD of Hosts, 
Who could enable so mean a person to right himself upon so 
mighty a Prince; together with the goodness and providence of 
GOD very observable in that it pleased Him to raise this man, 
not only from a low condition, but even from the state of perse- 
cution. His father suffered in it, being forced to fly from his 
house, near South Tavistock in Devon, into Kent: and there to 
inhabit in the hull of a ship, wherein many of his younger sons 
were born. He had twelve in all : and as it pleased GOD to 
give most of them a being upon the water, so the greatest part 
of them died at sea. The youngest, who though he was [wentl 
as far as any, yet died at home; whose posterity inherits that, 
which by himself and this noble Gentleman the eldest brother, 
was hardly, yet worthil}' gotten. 

I could more largely acquaint thee, that this Voyage was his 
Third he made into the West Indies; after that [of] his excellent 
service, both by sea and land, in Ireland, under Walter, Earl 
of Essex; his next, about the World; another, wherein he took 
St. Jago, Cartagena, St. Domingo, St. Augustino ; his doings 
at Cadiz ; besides the first Carrack taught by him to sail into 
England ; his stirrings in Eightj^-seven ; his remarkable actions 
in Eighty-eight; his endeavours in the Portugal employment; 
his last enterprise, determined by death ; and his filling Plymouth 
with a plentiful stream of fresh water : but I pass by all these. 
I had rather thou shouldest inquire of others! then to seem 
myself a vainglorious man. 

I intend not his praise ! I strive only to set out the praise 
of his and our good GOD ! that guided him in his truth ! and 
protected him in his courses ! My ends are to stir thee up to 
the worship of GOD, and service of our King and Country, by 
his example! If anything be worth thy consideration; conclude 
with me, that the LORD only, can do great things! 

Francis Drake [Bart] 


Calling upon this dull or effeminate Age, to follow his noble 
steps for gold and silver. 

AS THERE is a general Vengeance which secretly pur- 
l\ sueth the doers of wrong, and suffereth them not to 
-*- -^ prosper, albeit no man of purpose empeach them: so 
is there a particular Indignation, engrafifed in the bosom of 
all that are wronged, which ceaseth not seeking, by all means 
possible, to redress or remedy the wrong received. Inso- 
much as those great and mighty men, in whom their pros- 
perous estate hath bred such an overweening of themselves, 
that they do not only wrong their inferiors, but despise them 
being injured, seem to take a very unfit course for their own 
safety, and far unfitter for their rest. For as Esop teacheth, 
even the fly hath her spleen, and the emmet [ant} is not 
without her choler; and both together many times find 
means whereby, though the eagle lays her eggs in Jupiter's 
lap, yet by one way or other, she escapeth not requital of her 
wrong done [to] the emmet. 

Among the manifold examples hereof, which former Ages 
have committed to memory, or our Time yielded to sight: 
I suppose, there hath not been any more notable then this 
in hand; either in respect of the greatness of the person 
by whom the first injury was offered, or the meanness of 
him who righted himself. The one being, in his own con- 
ceit, the mightiest Monarch of all the world! The other, 
an English Captain, a mean subject of her Majesty's! Who 
(besides the wrongs received at Rio de [la] Hacha with 
Captain John Lovell in the years [15] 65 and [15] 66) hav- 
ing been grievously endamaged at San Juan de Ulua in the 
Bay of Mexico, with Captain John Hawkins, in the years 
[15167 and [i5]68, not only in the loss of his goods of 



some value, but also of his kinsmen and friends, and that 
by the falsehood of Don Martin Henriquez then the Vice- 
roy of Mexico; and finding that no recompense could be 
recovered out of Spain, by any of his own means, or by 
Her Majesty's letters; he used such helps as he might, by 
two several voyages into the West Indies (the first with 
two ships, the one called the Dragon, the other the Swan, 
in the year [15170: the other in the Swan alone in the year 
[15371 ), to gain such intelligences as might further him, 
to get some amends for his loss. 

And having, in those two Voyages, gotten such certain 
notice of the persons and places aimed at, as he thought 
requisite, and thereupon with good deliberation resolved on 
a Third Voyage (the description whereof we have now in 
hand) ; he according!}' prepared his ships and company, and 
then taking the first opportunity of a good wind, had such 
success in his proceedings, as now follows further to be 

On Whitsunday Eve, being the 24th of May, in the year 
1572, Captain Drake in the Pascha of Plymouth of 70 tons, 
his admiral [nag-ship] ; with the Swan of the same port, of 
25 tons, his vice-admiral, in which his brother John Drake 
was Captain (having in both of them, of men and boys 
seA'^enty-three, all voluntarily assembled; of which the eldest 
was fifty, all the rest under thirty: so divided that there were 
forty-seven in the one ship, and twenty-six in the other. 
Both richly furnished with victuals and apparel for a whole 
year; and no less heedfully provided of all manner of muni- 
tion, artillery, artificers, stuff and tools, that were requisite 
for such a Man-of-war in such an attempt: but especially 
having three dainty pinnaces made in Plymouth, taken as- 
under all in pieces, and stowed aboard, to be set up as 
occasion served), set sail, from out of the Sound of Ply- 
mouth, with intent to land at Nombre de Dios. 

The wind continued prosperous and favourable at north- 
east, and gave us a very good passage, without any alteration 
or change: so that albeit we had sight (3rd June) of Porto 
Santo, one of the Madeiras, and of the Canaries also within 
twelve days of our setting forth: yet we never struck sail. 


nor came to anchor, nor made any stay for any cause, 
neither there nor elsewhere, until twenty-five days after; 
when (28th June) we had sight of the island of Guada- 
loupe, one of the islands of the West Indies, goodly high 

The next morning (29th June), we entered between Dom- 
inica and Guadaloupe, where we descried two canoes coming 
from a rocky island, three leagues off Dominica; which 
usually repair thither to fish, by reason of the great plenty 
thereof, which is there continually to be found. 

We landed on the south side of it, remaining there three 
days to refresh our men; and to water our ships out of one 
of those goodly rivers, which fall down off the mountain. 
There we saw certain poor cottages ; built with Palmito 
boughs and branches; but no inhabitants, at that time, civil 
or savage: the cottages it may be (for we could know no 
certain cause of the solitariness we found there) serving, not 
for continual inhabitation, but only for their uses, that came 
to that place at certain seasons to fish. 

The third day after (ist July), about three in the after- 
noon, we set sail from thence, toward the continent of 
Terra fir ma. 

And the fifth day after (6th July), we had sight of the high 
land of Santa Marta; but came not near the shore by ten 

But thence directed our course, for a place called by us. 
Port Pheasant; for that our Captain had so named it in his 
former voyage, by reason of the great store of those goodly 
fowls, which he and his company did then daily kill and feed 
on, in that place. In this course notwithstanding we had 
two days calm, yet within six days after we arrived (12th 
July) at Port Pheasant, which is a fine round bay, of very 
safe harbour for all winds, lying between two high points, 
not past half a cable's length over at the mouth, but within, 
eight or ten cables' length every way, having ten or twelve 
fathoms of water more or less, full of good fish; the soil 
also very fruitful, which may appear by this, that our 
Captain having been in this place, within a year and few days 
before [t, e., in July, 1571] and having rid the place with 
many alleys and paths made; yet now all was so overgrown 


again, as that we doubted, at first, whether this was the 
same place or not. 

At our entrance into this bay, our Captain having given 
order to his brother what to do, if any occasion should hap- 
pen in his absence, Λvas on his way, with intent to have gone 
aland with some few only in his company, because he knew 
there dwelt no Spaniards within thirty-five leagues of that 
place. [Santiago de] Tolou being the nearest to the east- 
wards, and Nombre de Dios to the westwards, where any 
of that nation dwelt. 

But as we were rowing ashore, we saw a smoke in the 
woods, even near the place where our Captain had afore- 
time frequented; therefore thinking it fit to take more 
strength with us, he caused his other boat also to be manned, 
with certain muskets and other weapons, suspecting some 
enemy had been ashore. 

When we landed, we found by evident marks, that there 
had been lately there, a certain Englishman of Plymouth, 
called John Garret^ who had been conducted thither by cer- 
tain English mariners which had been there with our Cap- 
tain, in some of his former voyages. He had now left a 
plate of lead, nailed fast to a mighty great tree (greater 
than any four men joining hands could fathom about) on 
which were engraven these words, directed to our Captain. 


/F YOU fortune to come to this Port, make haste away! 
For the Spaniards which you had with you here, the 
last year, have bewrayed this place, and taken away 
all that you left here. 

■ I depart from, hence, this present yth of July, 1572. 
Your very loving friend, 

John Garret. 

The smoke which we saw, was occasioned by a fire, which 
the said Garret and his company had made, before their 
departure, in a very great tree, not far from this which had 
the lead nailed on it, \vhich had continued burning at least 
five days before our arrival. 

This advertisement notwithstanding, our Captain meant 


not to depart before he had built his pinnaces; which were 
yet aboard in pieces: for which purpose he knew this port 
to be a most convenient place. 

And therefore as soon as we had moored our ships, our 
Captain commanded his pinnaces to be brought ashore for 
the carpenters to set up; himself employing all his other 
company in fortifying a place (which he had chosen out, as a 
most fit plot) of three-quarters of an acre of ground, to make 
some strength or safety for the present, as sufficiently as the 
means he had would afford. Which was performed by fell- 
ing of great trees ; bowsing and hauling them together, with 
great pulleys and hawsers, until they were enclosed to the 
water ; and then letting others fall upon them, until they had 
raised with trees and boughs thirty feet in height round 
about, leaving only one gate to issue at, near the water 
side ; which every night, that we might sleep in more 
safety and security, was shut up, with a great tree drawn 
athwart it. 

The whole plot was built in pentagonal form, to wit, of 
five equal sides and angles, of which angles two were 
toward the sea, and that side between them was left open, 
for the easy launching of our pinnaces: the other four 
equal sides were wholly, excepting the gate before men- 
tioned, firmly closed up. 

Without, instead of a trench, the ground was rid [laid 
bare] for fifty feet space, round about. The rest was very 
thick with trees, of which many were of those kinds which 
are never without green leaves, till they are dead at the 
root: excepting only one kind of tree amongst them, much 
like to our Ash, which when the sun cometh right over 
them, causing great rains, suddenly casteth all its leaves, 
viz., within three days, and yet within six days after be- 
comes all green again. The leaves of the other trees do 
also in part fall away, but so as the trees continue still 
green notwithstanding: being of a marvellous height, and 
supported as it were with five or six natural buttresses 
growing out of their bodies so far, that three men may so 
be hidden in each of them, that they which shall stand in 
the very next buttress shall not be able to see them. One 
of them specially was marked to have had seven of those 


stays or buttresses, for the supporting of his greatness and 
height, which being measured with a line close by the 
bark and near to the ground, as it was indented or extant, 
was found to be above thirty-nine yards about. The wood 
of those trees is as heavy or heavier than Brazil or 
Lignum vitcs; and is in colour white. 

The next day after we had arrived (13th July), there 
came also into that bay, an English bark of the Isle of 
Wight, of Sir Edward Horsey's; wherein James Ranse 
was Captain and John Overy, Master, with thirty men: 
of which, some had been with our Captain in the same 
place, the year before. They brought in with them a 
Spanish caravel of Seville, which he had taken the day be- 
fore, athwart of that place ; being a Caravel of Adviso 
[Despatch hoaf] bound for Nombre de Dios ; and also one 
shallop with oars, which he had taken at Cape Blanc. 
This Captain Ranse understanding our Captain's purpose, 
was desirous to join in consort with him ; and was re- 
ceived upon conditions agreed on between them. 

Within seven days after his coming, having set up our 
pinnaces, and despatched all our business, in providing all 
things necessary, out of our ships into our pinnaces: we 
departed (20th July) from that harbour, setting sail in the 
morning towards Nombre de Dios, continuing our course 
till we came to the Isles of Pinos : where, being within three 
days arrived, we found (22nd July) two frigates of Nom- 
bre de Dios lading plank and timber from thence. 

The Negroes which were in those frigates, gave us some 
particular understanding of the present state of the town; 
and besides, told us that they had heard a report, that cer- 
tain soldiers should come thither shortly, and were daily 
looked for, from the Governor of Panama, and the country 
thereabout, to defend the town against the Cimaroons (a 
black people, which about eighty years past [i. e., 1512] 
fled from the Spaniards their masters, by reason of their 
cruelty, and are since grown to a Nation, under two Kings 
of their own: the one inhabiteth to the West, and the other 
to the East of the Way from Nombre de Dios to Panama) 
which had nearly surprised it [i. e., Nombre de Dios], 
about six weeks before [i.e., about loth June, 1572], 


Our Captain willing to use those Negroes well (not 
hurting himself) set them ashore upon the Main, that they 
might perhaps join themselves to their countrymen the 
Cimaroons, and gain their liberty if they would; or if they 
would not, yet by reason of the length and troublesomeness 
of the way by land to Nombre de Dios, he might prevent 
any notice of his coming, which they should be able to give. 
For he was loath to put the town to too much charge (which 
he knew they would willingly bestow) in providing before- 
hand for his entertainment ; and therefore he hastened his 
going thither, with as much speed and secrecy as possibly 
he could. 

To this end, disposing of all his companies, according as 
they inclined most; he left the three ships and the caravel 
with Captain Ranse; and chose into his four pinnaces 
(Captain Ranse's shallop made the fourth) beside fifty- 
three of our men, twenty more of Captain RanssI's com- 
pany ; with which he seemed competently furnished, to achieve 
what he intended ; especially having proportioned, according 
to his own purpose, and our men's disposition, their several 
arms, viz., six targets, six firepikes, twelve pikes, twenty- 
four muskets and calivers, sixteen bows, and six partisans, 
tv^ro drums, and two trumpets. 

Thus having parted (23rd July) from our company: we 
arrived at the island of Cativaas, being twenty-five leagues 
distant, about five days afterward (28th July). There we 
landed all in the morning betimes : and our Captain trained 
his men, delivering them their several weapons and arms 
which hitherto he had kept very fair and safe in good caske 
[casksl : and exhorting them after his manner, he declared 
" the greatness of the hope of good things that was there ! 
the weakness of the town, being unwalled ! and the hope he 
had of prevailing to recompense his wrongs ! especially now 
that he should come with such a crew, who wtve like-minded 
with himself; and at such a time, as he should be utterly 

Therefore, even that afternoon, he causeth us to set sail 
for Nombre de Dios, so that before sunset we were as far 
as Rio Francisco. Thence, he led us hard aboard the shore, 
that we might not be descried of the Watch House, until 


that being come within two leagues of the point of the bay, 
he caused us to strike a hull, and cast our grappers \_grap- 
pling irons], riding so until it was dark night. 

Then we weighed again, and set sail, rowing hard aboard 
the shore, with as much silence as we could, till we recovered 
the point of the harbour under the high land. There, we 
stayed, all silent; purposing to attempt the town in the 
dawning of the day: after that we had reposed ourselves, 
for a while. 

But our Captain with some other of his best men, finding 
that our people were talking of the greatness of the town, 
and what their strength might be; especially by the report 
of the Negroes that we took at the Isle of Pinos : thought it 
best to put these conceits out of their heads, and therefore 
to take the opportunity of the rising of the moon that night, 
persuading them that " it was the day dawning." By this 
occasion we were at the town a large hour sooner then first 
was purposed. For we arrived there by three of the clock 
after midnight. At what time it fortuned that a ship of 
Spain, of 60 tons, laden with Canary wines and other com- 
modities, which had but lately come into the bay; and had 
not )'et furled her sprit-sail (espying our four pinnaces, 
being an extraordinary number, and those rowing with 
many oars) sent away her gundeloe [? gondola] towards the 
town, to give warning. But our Captain perceiving it, cut 
betwixt her and the town, forcing her to go to the other 
side of the bay: whereby we landed without impeachment, 
although we found one gunner upon the Platform [battery] 
in the very place where we landed ; being a sandy place and 
no key {quay] at all, not past twenty yards from the houses. 

There we found six great pieces of brass ordnance, 
mounted upon their carriages, some Demy, some Whole- 

We presently dismounted them. The gunner fled. The 
town took alarm (being very ready thereto, by reason of 
their often disquieting by their near neighbours the Cima- 
roons) ; as we perceived, not only by the noise and cries of 
the people, but by the bell ringing out, and drums running 
up and down the town. 

Our Captain, according to the directions which he had 


given over night, to such as he had made choice of for the 
purpose, left twelve to keep the pinnaces ; that we might be 
sure of a safe retreat, if the worst befell. And having 
made sure work of the Platform before he would enter 
the town, he thought best, first to view the Mount on the 
east side of the town: where he was informed, by sundry- 
intelligences the year before, they had an intent to plant 
ordnance, which might scour round about the town. 

Therefore, leaving one half of his company to make a 
stand at the foot of the Mount, he marched up presently 
unto the top of it, with all speed to try the truth of the 
report, for the more safety. There we found no piece of 
ordnance, but only a very fit place prepared for such use, 
and therefore we left it without any of our men, and with 
all celerity returned now down the Mount. 

Then our Captain appointed his brother, with John 
OxNAM [or Oxenham] and sixteen other of his men, to go 
about, behind the King's Treasure House, and enter near 
the easter[n] end of the Market Place: himself with the 
rest, would pass up the broad street into the Market 
Place, with sound of drum and trumpet. The Firepikes, 
divided half to the one, and half to the other company, 
served no less for fright to the enemy than light of our 
men, who by his means might discern every place very 
well, as if it were near day : whereas the inhabitants stood 
amazed at so strange a sight, marvelling what the matter 
might be, and imagining, by reason of our drums and trum- 
pets sounding in so sundry places, that we had been a far 
greater number then we were. 

Yet, by means of the soldiers of which were in the town, 
and by reason of the time which we spent in marching up 
and down the Mount, the soldiers and inhabitants had put 
themselves in arms, and brought their companies in some 
order, at the south-east end of the Market Place, near the 
Governor's House, and not far from the gate of the town, 
which is the only one, leading towards Panama: having 
(as it seems) gathered themselves thither, either that in 
the Governor's sight they might shew their valour, if it 
might prevail; or else, that by the gate they might best 
take their Vale, and escape readiest. 


And to make a shew of far greater numbers of shot, 
or else of a custom they had, by the like device to terrify 
the Cimaroons; they had hung lines with matches lighted, 
overthwart the wester [n] end of the Market Place, between 
the Church and the Cross; as though there had been in a 
readiness some company of shot, whereas indeed there 
were not past two or three that taught these lines to dance, 
till they themselves ran away, as soon as they perceived 
they were discovered. 

But the soldiers and such as were joined with them, 
presented us with a jolly hot volley of shot, beating full 
upon the full egress of that street, in which we marched; 
and levelling very low, so as their bullets ofttimes grazed 
on the sand. 

We stood not to answer them in like terms : but having 
discharged our first volley of shot, and feathered them 
with our arrows (which our Captain had caused to be made 
of purpose in England; not great sheaf arrows, but fine 
roving shafts, very carefully reserved for the service) 
we came to the push of pike, so that our firepikes being well 
armed and made of purpose, did us very great service. 

For our men with their pikes and short weapons, in 
short time took such order among these gallants (some 
using the butt-end of their pieces instead of other weapons), 
that partly by reason of our arrows which did us there 
notable service, partly by occasion of this strange and 
sudden closing with them in this manner unlooked for, 
and the rather for that at the very instant, our Captain's 
brother, with the other company, with their firepikes, entered 
the Market Place by the easter[n] street: they casting 
down their weapons, fled all out of the town by the gate 
aforesaid, which had been built for a bar to keep out of 
the town the Cimaroons, who had often assailed it; but now 
served for a gap for the Spaniards to fly at. 

In following, and returning; di\^ers of our men were hurt 
with the weapons which the enemy had let fall as he fled; 
somewhat, for that we marched with such speed, but more 
for that they lay so thick and cross one on the other. 

Being returned, we made our stand near the midst of the 
Market Place, where a tree groweth hard by the Cross; 


whence our Captain sent some of our men to stay the ring- 
ing of the alarm bell, which had continued all this while: 
but the church being very strongly built and fast shut, 
they could not without firing (which our Captain forbade) 
get into the steeple where the bell rung. 

In the meantime, our Captain haΛαng taken two or three 
Spaniards in their flight, commanded them to shew him 
the Governor's House, where he understood was the ordi- 
nary place of unlading the moiles [mules'] of all the 
treasure which came from Panama by the King's appoint- 
ment. Although the silver only was kept there ; the gold, 
pearl, and jewels (being there once entered by the King's 
officer) was carried from thence to the King's Treasure 
House not far off, being a house very strongly built of lime 
and stone, for the safe keeping thereof. 

At our coming to the Governor's House, we found the 
great door where the mules do usually unlade, even then 
opened, a candle lighted upon the top of the stairs ; and 
a fair gennet ready saddled, either for the Governor him- 
self, or some other of his household to carry it after him. 
By means of this light we saw a huge heap of silver in that 
nether [lower] room ; being a pile of bars of silver of, as 
near as we could guess, seventy feet in length, of ten feet 
in breadth, and twelve feet in height, piled up against the 
wall, each bar was between thirty-five and forty pounds 
in weight. 

At sight hereof, our Captain commanded straightly that 
none of us should touch a bar of silver; but stand upon 
our weapons, because the town was full of people, and 
there was in the King's Treasure House near the water side, 
more gold and jewels than all our four pinnaces could carry: 
which we would presently set some in hand to break open, 
notwithstanding the Spaniards report the strength of it. 

We were no sooner returned to our strength, but there 
was a report brought by some of our men that our pin- 
naces were in danger to be taken ; and that if we ourselves 
got not aboard before day, we should be oppressed with 
multitude both of soldiers and towns-people. This report had 
his ground from one Diego a Negro, who, in the time of the 
first conflict, came and called to our pinnaces, to know 


" whether they were Captain Drake's ? " And upon 
answer received, continued entreating to be taken aboard, 
though he had first three or four shot made at him, until at 
length they fetched him; and learned by him, that, not past 
eight days before our arrival, the King had sent thither 
some 150 soldiers to guard the town against the Cimaroons, 
and the town at this time was full of people beside: which 
all the rather believed, because it agreed with the report 
of the Negroes, which we took before at the Isle of Pinos. 
And therefore our Captain sent his brother and John 
OxNAM to understand the truth thereof. 

They found our men which we left in our pinnaces much 
frightened, by reason that they saw great troops and com- 
panies running up and down, with matches lighted, some 
with other weapons, crying Que gente? que genie? which 
not having been at the first conflict, but coming from the 
utter ends of the town (being at least as big as Plymouth), 
came many times near us ; and understanding that we Avere 
English, discharged their pieces and ran away. 

Presently after this, a mighty shower of rain, with a 
terrible storm of thunder and lightning, fell, which poured 
down so vehemently (as it usually doth in those countries) 
that before we could recover the shelter of a certain shade 
or penthouse at the western end of the King's Treasure 
House, (which seemeth to have been built there of pur- 
pose to avoid sun and rain) some of our bow-strings were 
wet, and some of our match and powder hurt ! which while 
we were careful of, to refurnish and supply; divers of 
our men harping on the reports lately brought us, were 
muttering of the forces of the town, which our Captain 
perceiving, told them, that "He had brought them to the 
mouth of the Treasure of the World, if they avouM want 
it, they might henceforth blame nobody but themselves ! " 

And therefore as soon as the storm began to assuage of 
his fury (which was a long half hour) willing to give his 
men no longer leisure to demur of those doubts, nor yet 
allow the enemy farther respite to gather themselves to- 
gether, he stept forward commanding his brother, with 
John Oxnam and the company appointed them, to break 
the King's Treasure House: the rest to follow him to keep 


the strength of the Market Place, till they had despatched 
the business for which they came. 

But as he stepped forward, his strength and sight and 
speech failed him, and he began to faint for want of blood, 
which, as then we perceived, had, in great quantity, issued 
upon the sand, out of a wound received in his leg in the 
first encounter, whereby though he felt some pain, yet 
(for that he perceived divers of the company, having al- 
ready gotten many good things, to be very ready to take 
all occasions, of winding themselves out of that conceited 
danger) would he not have it known to any, till this his 
fainting, against his will, bewrayed it : the blood having 
first filled the very prints which our footsteps made, to 
the greater dismay of all our company, who thought it 
not credible that one man should be able to spare so much 
blood and live. 

And therefore even they, which were willing to have 
adventured the most for so fair a booty, would in no case 
hazard their Captain's life; but (having given him some- 
what to drink wherewith he recovered himself, and having 
bound his scarf about his leg, for the stopping of the blood) 
entreated him to be content to go with them aboard, there 
to have his wound searched and dressed, and then to return 
on shore again if he thought good. 

This when they could not persuade him unto (as who 
knew it to be utterly impossible, at least very unlikely, 
that ever they should, for that time, return again, to re- 
cover the state in which they now were: and was of opinion, 
that it were more honourable for himself, to jeopard his 
life for so great a benefit, than to leave off so high an enter- 
prise unperformed), they joined altogether and with force 
mingled with fair entreaty, they bare him aboard his pin- 
nace, and so abandoned a most rich spoil for the present, 
only to preserve their Captain's life: and being resolved 
of him, that while they enjoyed his presence, and had him 
to command them, they might recover wealth sufficient; but 
if once they lost him, they should hardly be able to recover 
home. No, not with that Avhich they had gotten already. 

Thus we embarked by break of the day (29th July), 
having besides our Captain, many of our men wounded. 


though none slain but one Trumpeter: whereupon though 
our surgeons were busily employed, in providing remedies 
and salves for their wounds: yet the main care of our 
Captain was respected by all the rest; so that before we 
departed out of the harbour for the more comfort of our 
company, we took the aforesaid ship of wines without great 

But before we had her free of the haven, they of the 
town had made means to bring one of their culverins, which 
we had dismounted, so as they made a shot at us, but 
hindered us not from carrying forth the prize to the Isle 
of Bastimentos, or the Isle of Victuals: which is an island 
that lieth without the bay to the westward, about a league 
off the town, where we stayed the two next days, to cure 
our wounded men, and refresh ourselves, in the goodly 
gardens which we there found abounding with great store 
of all dainty roots and fruits; besides great plenty of 
poultry and other fowls, no less strange then delicate. 

Shortly upon our first arrival in this island, the Governor 
and the rest of his Assistants in the town, as we afterwards 
understood, sent unto our Captain, a proper gentleman, of 
mean stature, good complexion, and a fair spoken, a princi- 
pal soldier of the late sent garrison, to view in what state 
we were. At his coming he protested " He came to us, of 
mere good will, for that we had attempted so great and 
incredible a matter with so few men: and that, at the first, 
they feared that we had been French, at whose hands they 
knew they should find no mercy : but after they perceived 
by our arrows, that we were Englishmen, their fears were 
the less, for that they knew, that though we took the 
treasure of the place, yet we would not use cruelty toward 
their persons. But albeit this his affection gave him cause 
enough, to come aboard such, whose virtue he so honoured : 
yet the Governor also had not only consented to his coming, 
but directly sent him, upon occasion that divers of the 
town affirmed, said he, ' that they knew our Captain, who 
the last two years had been often on our coast, and had 
always used their persons very well.' And therefore 
desired to know, first. Whether our Captain was the same 
Captain Drake or not? and next. Because many of their 


men were wounded with our arrows, whether they were 
poisoned or not? and how their wounds might best be cured? 
lastly, What victuals we wanted, or other necessaries? of 
which the Governor promised by him to supply and furnish 
us, as largely as he durst." 

Our Captain, although he thought this soldier but a spy: 
yet used him very courteously, and answered him to his 
Governor's demands : that " He was the same Drake whom 
they meant ! It was never his manner to poison his arrows! 
They might cure their wounded by ordinary surgery ! As 
for wants, he knew the Island of Bastimentos had sufficient, 
and could furnish him if he listed ! but he wanted nothing 
but some of that special commodity which that country 
yielded, to content himself and his company." And there- 
fore he advised the Governor " to hold open his .eyes ! for 
before he departed, if GOD lent him life and leave, he 
meant to reap some of their harvest, which they get out of 
the earth, and send into Spain to trouble all the earth ! " 

To this answer unlocked for, this gentleman replied, "If 
he might, without offence, move such a question, what 
should then be the cause of our departing from that town 
at this time, where was above 360 tons of silver ready for 
the Fleet, and much more gold in value, resting in iron 
chests in the King's Treasure House ? " 

But when our Captain had shewed him the true cause of 
his unwilling retreat aboard, he acknowledged that " we 
had no less reason in departing, than courage in attempt- 
ing " : and no doubt did easily see, that it was not for the 
town to seek revenge of us, by manning forth such frigates 
or other vessels as they had ; but better to content them- 
selves and provide for their own defence. 

Thus, with great favour and courteous entertainment, 
besides such gifts from our Captain as most contented him, 
after dinner, he was in such sort dismissed, to make report 
of that he had seen, that he protested, " he was never so 
much honoured of any in his life." 

After his departure, the Negro formentioned, being ex- 
amined more fully, confirmed this report of the gold and the 
silver; with many other intelligences of importance: espe- 
cially how we might have gold and silver enough, if we 


would, by means of the Cimaroons, whom though he had 
betrayed divers times (being used thereto by his Masters) 
so that he knew they would kill him, if they got him: yet 
if our Captain would undertake his protection, he durst 
adventure his life, because he knew our Captain's name was 
most precious and highly honoured by them. 

This report ministered occasion to further consultation: 
for which, because this place seemed not the safest; as 
being neither the healthiest nor quietest; the next day, in 
the morning, we all set our course for the Isle of Pinos or 
Port Plenty, where we had left our ships, continuing all 
that day, and the next till towards night, before we re- 
covered it. 

We were the longer in this course, for that our Captain 
sent away his brother and Ellis Hixom to the westward, 
to search the River of Chagres, where himself had been 
the year before, and yet was careful to gain more notice of; 
it being a river which trendeth to the southward, within 
six leagues of Panama, where is a little town called Venta 
Cruz [Venta de Cruzes'], whence all the treasure, that was 
usually brought thither from Panama by mules, was em- 
barked in frigates [sailing] down that river into the North 
sea, and so to Nombre de Dios. 

It ebbeth and floweth not far into the land, and therefore 
it asketh three days' rowing with a fine pinnace to pass 
[up] from the mouth to Venta Cruz ; but one day and a 
night serveth to return down the river. 

At our return to our ships (ist August), in our consulta- 
tion. Captain Ranse (forecasting divers doubts of our safe 
continuance upon that coast, being now discovered) was 
willing to depart; and our Captain no less willing to dis- 
miss him : and therefore as soon as our pinnaces returned 
from Chagres (7th August) with such advertisement as 
they were sent for, about eight days before ; Captain Ranse 
took his leave, leaving us at the isle aforesaid, where we 
had remained five or six days. 

In which meantime, having put all things in a readiness, 
our Captain resolved, with his two ships and three pinnaces 
to go to Cartagena; whither in sailing, we spent some six 
days by reason of the calms which came often upon us: 


but all this time we attempted nothing that we might have 
done by the way, neither at [Santiago de] Tolou nor other- 
where, because we would not be discovered. 

We came to anchor with our two ships in the evening 
[13th August], in seven fathom water, between the island 
of Charesha [the island of Cartagena, p. 161] and St. 
Barnards [San Bernardo']. 

Our Captain led the three pinnaces about the island, into 
the harbour of Cartagena; where at the very entry, he 
found a frigate at anchor, aboard which was only one old 
man ; who being demanded, " Where the rest of his com- 
pany was ? " answered, " That they were gone ashore in 
their gundeloe[? gondola or ship's boat], that evening, to 
fight about a mistress " : and voluntarily related to our 
Captain that, "two hours before night, there past by them 
a pinnace, with sail and oars, as fast as ever they could row, 
calling to him ' Whether there had not been any English 
or Frenchmen there lately?' and upon answer that, 'There 
had been none ! ' they bid them ' look to themselves ! ' That, 
within an hour that this pinnace was come to the utterside 
loiitside] of Cartagena, there were many great pieces shot off, 
whereupon one going to top, to descry what might be the 
cause? espied, over the land, divers frigates and small 
shipping bringing themselves within the Castle." 

This report our Captain credited, the rather for that 
himself had heard the report of the ordnance at sea; and 
perceived sufficiently, that he was now descried. Notwith- 
standing in farther examination of this old mariner, having 
understood, that there was, within the next point, a great 
ship of Seville, which had here discharged her loading, and 
rid now Avith her yards across, being bound the next morn- 
ing for Santo Domingo : our Captain took this old man 
into his pinnace to verify that which he had informed, and 
rowed towards this ship, which as we came near it, hailed 
us, asking, " Whence our shallops were ? " 

We answered, " From Nombre de Dios ! " 

Straightway they railed ! and reviled ! We gave no heed 
to their words, but every pinnace, according to our Captain's 
order, one on the starboard bow, the other on the star- 
board quarter, and the Captain in the midship on the lar- 


board side, forthwith boarded her; though we had some 
difficulty to enter by reason of her height, being of 240 tons. 
But as soon as we entered upon the decks, we threw down 
the grates and spardecks, to prevent the Spaniards from 
annoying us with their close fights: who then perceiving 
that we were possessed of their ship, stowed themselves 
all in hold with their weapons, except two or three yonkers, 
which were found afore the beetes: when having light 
out of our pinnaces, we found no danger of the enemy 
remaining, we cut their cables at halse, and with our three 
pinnaces, toAved her without the island into the sound right 
afore the town, without [beyond the} danger of their great 

Meanwhile, the town having intelligence hereof, or by 
their watch, took the alarm, rang out their bells, shot off 
about thirty pieces of great ordnance, put all their men in 
a readiness, horse and foot, came down to the very point 
of the wood, and discharged their calivers, to impeach us 
if they might, in going forth. 

The next morning (14th August) our ships took two 
frigates, in which there were two, who called themselves 
King's Scrivanos, the one of Cartagena, the other of 
Veragua, with seven mariners and two Negroes : who had 
been at Nombre de Dios and were ηοΛν bound for Carta- 
gena with double [? duplicate] letters of advice, to certify 
them that Captain Drake had been at Nombre de Dios, 
had taken it ; and had it not been that he was hurt with 
some blessed shot, by all likelihood he had sacked it. He 
was yet still upon the coast; they should therefore carefully 
prepare for him ! 

After that our Captain had brought all his fleet together, 
at the Scrivanos' entreaties, he was content to do them 
all favour, in setting them and all their companies on shore ; 
and so bare thence with the islands of St. Bernards, about 
three leagues of the town: where we found great store of 
fish for our refreshing. 

Here, our Captain considering that he was now discovered 
upon the chieftest places of all the coast, and yet not mean- 
ing to leave it till he had found the Cimaroons, and " made " 
his voyage, as he had conceived; which would require some 


length of time, and sure manning of his pinnaces : he deter- 
mined with himself, to burn one of the ships, and make the 
other a Storehouse; that his pinnaces (which could not 
otherwise) might be thoroughly manned, and so he might 
be able to abide any time. 

But knowing the affection of his company, how loath 
they were to leave either of their ships, being both so good 
sailers and so well furnished; he purposed in himself by 
some policy, to make them most willing to effect that he 
intended. And therefore sent for one Thomas Moone, 
who was Carpenter in the Swan, and taking him into his 
cabin, chargeth him to conceal for a time, a piece of service, 
which he must in any case consent to do aboard his own 
ship: that was, in the middle of the second watch, to go 
down secretly into the well of the ship, and with a spike- 
gimlet, to bore three holes, as near the keel as he could, 
and lay something against it, that the force of the water 
entering, might make no great noise, nor be discovered by 
a boiling up. 

Thomas Moone at the hearing hereof, being utterly dis- 
mayed, desired to know " What cause there might be, to 
move him to sink so good a bark of his own, new and strong; 
and that, by his means, who had been in two so rich and 
gainful voyages in her with himself heretofore: If his 
brother, the Master, and the rest of the company [number- 
ing 26, see p. iS4\ should know of such his fact, he thought 
verily they would kill him." 

But Avhen our Captain had imparted to him his cause, 
and had persuaded him with promise that it should not be 
known, till all of them should be glad of it: he understood 
it, and did it accordingly. 

The next morning [15th August] our Captain took his 
pinnace very early, purposing to go a fishing, for that there 
is very great store on the coast; and falling aboard the 
Swan, calleth for his brother to go with him, who rising 
suddenly, answereth that " He would follow presently, or 
if it would please him to stay a very little, he would attend 

Our Captain perceiving the feat wrought, would not 
hasten him ; but in rowing away, demanded of them, " Why 


their bark was so deep ? " as making no great account of 
it. But, by occasion of this demand, his brother sent one 
down to the Steward, to know " Whether there were any 
water in the ship? or what other cause might be?" 

The Steward, hastily stepping down at his usual scuttle, 
was wet up to his waist, and shifting with more haste to 
come up again as if the water had followed him, cried out 
that " The ship was full of water ! " There was no need 
to hasten the company, some to the pump, others to search 
for the leak, which the Captain of the bark seeing they did, 
on all hands, very willingly ; he followed his brother, and 
certified him of " the strange chance befallen them that 
night; that whereas they had not pumped twice in six 
weeks before, now they had six feet of water in hold: and 
therefore he desireth leave from attending him in fishing, 
to intend the search and remedy of the leak." And when 
our Captain with his company preferred [offered] to go 
to help them ; he answered, '' They had men enough aboard, 
and prayed him to continue his fishing, that they might 
have some part of it for their dinner." Thus returning, 
he found his company had taken great pain, but had freed 
the water very little: yet such was their love to the bark, 
as our Captain well knew, that they ceased not, but to 
the utmost of their strength, laboured all that they might till 
three in the afternoon ; by which time, the company perceiv- 
ing, that (though they had been relieved by our Captain 
himself and many of his company) yet they were not able 
to free above a foot and a half of water, and could have 
no likelihood of finding the leak, had now a less liking of 
her than before, and greater content to hear of some 
means for remedy. 

Whereupon our Captain (consulting them what they 
thought best to be done) found that they had more desire to 
have all as he thought fit, than judgement to conceive any 
means of remedy. And therefore he propounded, that him- 
self would go in the pinnace, till he could provide him some 
handsome frigate ; and that his brother should be Captain 
in the admiral [nag-ship'] and the Master should also be 
there placed with him, instead of this : which seeing they 
could not save, he would have fired that the enemy might 


never recover her: but first all the pinnaces should be 
brought aboard her, that every one might take out of her 
whatever they lacked or liked. 

This, though the company at the first marvelled at; yet 
presently it was put in execution and performed that night. 

Our Captain had his desire, and men enough for his 

The next morning (i6th August) we resolved to seek out 
some fit place, in the Sound of Darien, where we might 
safely leave our ship at anchor, not discoverable by the 
enemy, who thereby might imagine us quite departed from 
the coast, and we the meantime better follow our purposes 
with our pinnaces ; of which our Captain would himself 
take two to Rio Grande [Magdalena'], and the third leave 
with his brother to seek the Cimaroons. 

Upon this resolution, we set sail presently for the said 
Sound; which within five days (21st August), we recovered: 
abstaining of purpose from all such occasion, as might 
hinder our determination, or bewray [betray] our being 
Tjpon the coast. 

As soon as we arrived where our Captain intended, and 
had chosen a fit and convenient road out of all trade [to or 
from any Mart~\ for our purpose ; we reposed ourselves 
there, for some fifteen days, keeping ourselves close, that 
the bruit of our being upon the coast might cease. 

But in the meantime, we were not idle: for beside such 
ordinary works, as our Captain, every month did usually 
inure us to, about the trimming and setting of his pin- 
naces, for their better sailing and rowing: he caused us 
to rid a large plot of ground, both of trees and brakes, 
and to build us houses sufficient for all our lodging, and 
one especially for all our public meetings ; wherein the 
Negro which fled to us before, did us great service, as being 
well acquainted with the country, and their means of build- 
ing. Our archers made themselves butts to shoot at, be- 
cause we had many that delighted in that exercise, and 
wanted not a fletcher to keep our bows and arrows in order. 
The rest of the company, every one as he liked best, made 
his disport at bowls, quoits, keiles, &c. For our Captain 
allowed one half of the company to pass their time thus, 


every other day interchangeable; the other half being en- 
joined to the necessary works, about our ship and pin- 
naces, and the providing of fresh victuals, fish, fowl, hogs, 
deer, conies, &c., whereof there is great plenty. Here our 
smiths set up their forge, as they used, being furnished out 
of England, with anvil, iron, coals, and all manner of nec- 
essaries, which stood us in great stead. 

At the end of these fifteen days (5th September), our 
Captain leaving his ship in his brother's charge, to keep 
all things in order; himself took with him, according to his 
former determination, two pinnaces for Rio Grande, and 
passing by Cartagena but out of sight, when we were within 
two leagues of the river, we landed (8th September), to 
the westward on the Main, where we saw great store of 
cattle. There we found some Indians, who asking us in 
friendly sort, in broken Spanish, " What we would have " ? 
and understanding that we desired fresh victuals in traffic; 
they took such cattle for us as we needed, with ease and so 
readily, as if they had a special commandment over them, 
whereas they would not abide us to come near them. And 
this also they did willingly, because our Captain, accord- 
ing to his custom, contented them for their pains, with 
such things as they account greatly of; in such sort that 
they promised, we should have there, of them at any time 
what we would. 

The same day, we departed thence to Rio Grande [Mag- 
dalena], where we entered about three of the clock in the 
afternoon. There are two entries into this river, of which 
we entered the wester[n] most called Boca Chica. The 
freshet [cnrrenti is so great, that we being half a league 
from the mouth of it, filled fresh water for our beverage. 

From three o'clock till dark at night, we rowed up the 
stream ; but the current was so strong downwards, that we 
got but two leagues, all that time. We moored our pinnaces 
to a tree that night: for that presently, with the closing of 
the evening, there fell a monstrous shower of rain, with 
such strange and terrible claps of thunder, and flashes of 
lightning, as made us not a little to marvel at, although 
our Captain had been acquainted with such like in that 


country, and told us that they continue seldom longer than 
three-quarters of an hour. 

This storm was no sooner ceast, but it became very calm, 
and therewith there came such an innumerable multitude 
of a kind of flies of that country, called mosquitoes, like 
our gnats, Avhich bite so spitefully, that we could not rest 
all that night, nor find means to defend ourselves from them, 
by reason of the heat of the country. The best remedy 
we then found against them, was the juice of lemons. 

At the break of day (9th Sept.), we departed, rowing 
in the eddy, and hauling up by the trees where the eddy 
failed, with great labour, by spells, without ceasing, each 
company their half-hour glass: without meeting any, till 
about three o'clock in the afternoon, by which time we 
could get but five leagues ahead. 

Then we espied a canoe, with two Indians fishing in 
the river; but we spake not to them, least so we might be 
descried : nor they to us, as taking us to be Spaniards. But 
within an hour after, we espied certain houses, on the other 
side of the river, whose channel is twenty-five fathom 
deep, and its breadth so great, that a man can scantly be 
discerned from side to side. Yet a Spaniard which kept 
those houses, had espied our pinnaces; and thinking we had 
been his countrymen, made a smoke, for a signal to turn 
that way, as being desirous to speak with us. After that, 
we espying this smoke, had made with it, and were half 
the river over, he wheaved [li'avedl to us, with his hat and 
his long hanging sleeves, to come ashore. 

But as we drew nearer to him, and he discerned that we 
were not those he looked for; he took his heels, and fled 
from his houses, which we found to be, five in number, all 
full of white rusk, dried bacon, that country cheese (like 
Holland cheese in fashion, but far more delicate in taste, 
of which they send into Spain as special presents) many 
sorts of sweetmeats, and conserves; with great store of 
sugar: being provided to serve the Fleet returning to Spain. 

With this store of victuals, we loaded our pinnaces; by 
the shutting in of the day, we were ready to depart; for 
that we hastened the rather, by reason of an intelligence 
given us by certain India» women which we found in 


those houses: that the frigates (these are ordmarily thirty, 
or upwards, which usually transport the merchandise, sent 
out of Spain to Cartagena from thence to these houses, and 
so in great canoes up hence into Nuevo Reyno, for which 
the river running many hundred of leagues within the land 
serveth very fitly: and return in exchange, the gold and 
treasure, silver, victuals, and commodities, which that king- 
dom yields abundantly) were not yet returned from Carta- 
gena, since the first alarm they took of our being there. 

As we were going aboard our pinnaces from these Store- 
houses (loth Sept.), the Indians of a great town called 
Villa del Rey, some two miles distant from the water's 
side where we landed, were brought down by the Spaniards 
into the bushes, and shot arrows; but we rowed down the 
stream with the current (for that the wind was against 
us) only one league; and because it was night, anchored 
till the morning, when we rowed down to the mouth of the 
river, where we unloaded all our provisions, and cleansed 
our pinnaces, according to our Captain's custom, and took 
it in again, and the same day went to the Westward. 

In this return, we descried a ship, a barque, and a frigate, 
of which the ship and frigate went for Cartagena, but the 
Barque was bound to the Northwards, with the wind 
easterly, so that we imagined she had some gold or 
treasure going for Spain: therefore we gave her chase, but 
taking her, and finding nothing of importance in her, 
understanding that she was bound for sugar and hides, 
we let her go; and having a good gale of wind, continued 
our former course to our ship and company. 

In the way between Cartagena and Tolou, we took [nth 
September] five or six frigates, which were laden from 
Tolou, with live hogs, hens, and maize which we call 
Guinea wheat. Of these, having gotten what intelligence 
they could give, of their preparations for us, and divers 
opinions of us, we dismissed all the men; only staying two 
frigates with us, because they were so well stored with good 

Within three days after, we arrived at the place which 
our Captain chose, at first, to leave his ship in, which was 


called by our Captain, Port Plenty; by reason we brought 
in thither continually all manner store of good victuals, 
which we took, going that way by sea, for the victualling 
of Cartagena and Nombre de Dios as also the Fleets going 
and coming out of Spain. So that if we had been two 
thousand, yea three thousand persons, we might with our 
pinnaces easily have provided them sufficient victuals of 
wine, meal, rusk; cassavi (a kind of bread made of a root 
called Yucca, whose juice is poison, but the substance good 
and wholesome), dried beef, dried fish, live sheep, live 
hogs, abundance of hens, besides the infinite store of dainty 
flesh fish, very easily to be taken every day; insomuch that 
we were forced to build four several magazines or store- 
houses, some ten, some twenty leagues asunder; some in 
islands, some in the Main, providing ourselves in divers 
places, that though the enemy should, with force, surprise 
any one, yet we might be sufficiently furnished, till we 
had " made " our voyage as we did hope. In building of 
these, our Negro's help was very much, as having a special 
skill, in the speedy erection of such houses. 

This our store was much, as thereby we relieved not only 
ourselves and the Cimaroons while they were with us ; but 
also two French ships in extreme want. 

For in our absence. Captain John Drake, having one of 
our pinnaces, as was appointed, went in with the Main, and 
as he rowed aloof the shore, where he was directed by 
Diego the Negro aforesaid, which willingly came unto us 
at Nombre de Dios, he espied certain of the Cimaroons; 
with whom he dealt so effectually, that in conclusion he left 
two of our men with their leader, and brought aboard two 
of theirs: agreeing that they should meet him again the 
next day, at a river midway between the Cabezas [Cabeaa 
is Spanish for Headland'] and our ships; which they named 
Rio Diego. 

These two being very sensible men, chosen out by their 
commander {chief], did, with all reverence and respect, 
declare unto our Captain, that their nation conceited great 
joy of his arrival, because they knew him to be an enemy 
to the Spaniards, not only by his late being in Nombre 
de Dios, but also by his former voyages; and therefore were 


ready to assist and favour his enterprises against his and 
their enemies to the uttermost: and to that end their 
captain and company did stay at this present near the mouth 
of Rio Diego, to attend what answer and order should be 
given them ; that they would have marched by land, even to 
this place, but that the way is very long, and more trouble- 
some, by reason of many steep mountains, deep rivers, and 
thick brakes : desiring therefore, that it might please our 
Captain to take some order, as he thought best, Avith all 
convenient speed in this behalf. 

Our Captain considering the speech of these persons, 
and weighing it with his former intelligences had not 
only by Negroes, but Spaniards also, whereof he was always 
very careful: as also conferring it with his brother's in- 
formations of the great kindness that they shewed him, 
being lately with them: after he had heard the opinions of 
those of best service with him, " what were fittest to be 
done presently?" resolved himself with his brother, and 
the two Cimaroons, in his two pinnaces, to go toward this 
river. As he did the same evening, giving order, that the 
ship and the rest of his fleet should the next morning 
follow him, because there was a place of as great safety 
and sufficiency, which his brother had found out near the 
river. The safety of it consisted, not only in that which is 
common all along that coast from Tolou to Nombre de Dios, 
being above sixty leagues, that it is a most goodly and plen- 
tiful country, and yet inhabited not with one Spaniard, or 
any for the Spaniards: but especially in that it lieth among 
a great many of goodly islands full of trees. Where, though 
there be channels, yet there are such rocks and shoals, that 
no man can enter by night without great danger; nor by 
day without discovery, whereas our ships might lie hidden 
within the trees. 

The next day (14th September) we arrived at this river 
appointed, where we found the Cimaroons according to 
promise: the rest of their number were a mile up, in a wood 
by the river's side. There after we had given them enter- 
tainment, and received good testimonies of their joy and 
good will towards us, we took two more of them into our 
pinnace, leaving our two men with the rest of theirs, to 


march by land, to another river called Rio Guana, with 
intent there to meet with another company of Cimaroons 
which were now in the mountains. 

So we departed that day from Rio Diego, with our pin- 
naces, towards our ship, as marvelling that she followed us 
not as was appointed. 

But two days after (i6th September), we found her in the 
place where we left her; but in far other state, being much 
spoiled and in great danger, by reason of a tempest she had 
in our absence. 

As soon as we could trim our ship, being some two days, 
our Captain sent away (i8th September) one of his pin- 
naces, towards the bottom of the bay, amongst the shoals 
and sandy islands, to sound out the channel, for the bringing 
in of our ship nearer the Main. 

The next day (19th September) we followed, and were 
with wary pilotage, directed safely into the best channel, 
with much ado to recoΛ'er the road, among so many flats 
and shoals. It was near about five leagues from the Cati- 
vaas, betwixt an island and the Main, where we moored 
our ship. The island was not above four cables in length 
from the Main, being in quantity some three acres of 
ground, fiat and very full of trees and bushes. 

We were forced to spend the best part of three days, after 
our departure from our Port Plenty, before we were quiet 
in this new found road [on Rio Diego, see pp. 157 and 158] 
(22nd September), which we had but newly entered, when 
our two men and the former troop of Cimaroons, with 
twelve others whom they had met in the mountains, came 
(23rd September) in sight over against our ship, on the 
Main. Whence we fet[ched] them all aboard, to their great 
comfort and our content: they rejoicing that they should 
have some fit opportunity to wreak their wrongs on the 
Spaniards; we hoping that now our voyage should be 

At our first meeting, when our Captain had moΛ'ed them, 
to shew him the means which they had to furnish him with 
gold and silver ; they answered plainly, that " had they 
known gold had been his desire; they would have satisfied 
him with store, which, for the present, they could not do: 


because the rivers, in which they sunk great store (which 
they had taken from the Spaniards, rather to despite them 
than for love of gold) were now so high, that they could 
not get it out of such depths for him; and because the 
Spaniards, in these rainy months, do not use [are not accus- 
tomed} to carry their treasure by land." 

This answer although it were somewhat unlooked for ; yet 
nothing discontented us, but rather persuaded us farther of 
their honest and faithful meaning toward us. Therefore our 
Captain to entertain these five months, commanded all our 
ordnance and artillery ashore, with all our other provisions : 
sending his pinnaces to the Main, to bring over great trees, 
to make a fort upon the same island, for the planting of 
all our ordnance therein, and for our safeguard, if the 
enemy, in all this time, should chance to come. 

Our Cimaroons (24th September) cut down Palmito 
boughs and branches, and with wonderful speed raised up 
two large houses for all our company. Our fort was then 
made, by reason of the place, triangle-wise, with main tim- 
ber, and earth of which the trench yielded us good store, 
so that we made it thirteen feet in height. [Fort Diego.'] 

But after we had continued upon this island fourteen days, 
our Captain having determined, with three pinnaces, to go 
for Cartagena left (7th October), his brother John Drake, 
to govern these who remained behind with the Cimaroons 
to finish the fort which he had begun: for which he ap- 
pointed him to fetch boards and planks, as many as his pin- 
naces would carry, from the prize we took at Rio Grande, 
and left at the Cativaas, where she drove ashore and 
wrecked in our absence : but now she might serve com- 
modiously, to supply our use, in making platforms for our 
ordnance. Thus our Captain and his brother took their 
leave; the one to the Eastward, and the other to the 

That night, we came to an isle, which he called Spur-kite 
land, because we found there great store of such a kind of 
bird in shape, but very delicate, of which we killed and 
roasted many; staying there till the next day midnoon (8th 
October), when we departed thence. And about four. 


o'clock recovered a big island in our way, where we stayed 
all night, by reason that there was great store of fish, and 
especially of a great kind of shell-fish of a foot long. We 
called them Whelks. 

The next morning (9th October), we were clear of these 
islands and shoals, and hauled off into the sea. About four 
days after (13th October), near the island of St. Bernards, 
we chased two frigates ashore ; and recovering one of these 
islands, made our abode there some two days (i4th-i5th 
October) to wash our pinnaces and to take of the fish. 

Thence we went towards Tolou, and that day (i6th Octo- 
ber) landed near the town in a garden, where we found 
certain Indians, who delivered us their bows and arrows, 
and gathered for us such fruit as the garden did yield, being 
many sorts of dainty fruits and roots, [we] still contenting 
them for what we received. Our Captain's principal intent 
in taking this and other places by the way, not being for 
any other cause, but only to learn true intelligence of the 
state of the country and of tlje Fleets. 

Hence we departed presently, and rowed towards 
Charesha, the island of Cartagena; and entered in at Bocha 
Chica, and having the wind large, we sailed in towards the 
city, and let fall our grappers [grappling irons'] betwixt 
the island and the Main, right over against the goodly 
Garden Island. In which, our Captain would not suffer us 
to land, notwithstanding our importunate desire, because he 
knew, it might be dangerous : for that they are wont to send 
soldiers thither, when they know of any Men-of-war on the 
coast; which we found accordingly. For within three hours 
after, passing by the point of the island, we had a volley of 
a hundred shot from them, and yet there was but one of our 
men hurt. 

This evening (i6th October) we departed to sea; and 
the day following (17th October), being some two leagues 
off the harbour, we took a bark, and found that the captain 
and his wife with the better sort of the passengers, had 
forsaken her, and were gone ashore in the Gundeloe [ship's 
boaf] : by occasion whereof we boarded without resistance, 
though they were well provided with swords and targets 
and some small shot, besides four iron bases. She was 50 

HC— Vol. 33 (6) 


tons, having ten mariners, five or six Negroes, great store of 
soap and sweet meat, bound from St. Domingo to Cartagena. 
This Captain left behind him a silk ancient [flag} with his 
arms; as might be thought, in hasty departing. 

The next day (i8th October), we sent all the company 
ashore to seek their masters, saving a young Negro two or 
three years old, which we brought away; but kept the bark, 
and in her, bore into the mouth of Cartagena harbour, 
where we anchored. 

That afternoon, certain horsemen came down to the point 
by the wood side, and with the Scrivano fore-mentioned, 
came towards our bark with a flag of truce, desiring of 
our Captain's safe conduct for his coming and going; the 
which being granted, he came aboard us, giving our Cap- 
tain " great thanks for his manifold favours, etc., promising 
that night before daybreak, to bring as much victuals as they 
would desire, what shift so ever he made, or what danger 
soever incurred of law and punishment." But this fell out 
to be nothing but a device of the Governor forced upon the 
Scrivano, to delay time, till they might provide themselves 
of sufficient strength to entrap us: for which this fellow, by 
his smooth speech, was thought a fit means. So by sun 
rising, (19th October), when we perceived his words but 
words, we put to sea to the westward of the island, some 
three leagues off, where we lay at hull the rest of all that 
day and night. 

The next day (20th October), in the afternoon, there came 
out of Cartagena, two frigates bound for St. Domingo, the 
one of 58, the other of 12 tons, having nothing in them but 
ballast. We took them within a league of the town, and 
came to anchor with them within sacre shot of the east 
Bulwark. There were in those frigates some twelve or 
thirteen common mariners, which entreated to be set ashore. 
To them our Captain gave the great [er] frigate's gundeloe, 
and dismissed them. 

The next morning (21st October) when they came down 
to the wester [n] point with a flag of truce, our Captain 
manned one of his pinnaces and rowed ashore. When we 
were within a cable's length of the shore, the Spaniards fled, 
hiding themselves in the woods, as being afraid of our ord- 


nance; but indeed to draw us on to land confidently, and to 
presume of our strength. Our Captain commanding the 
grapnell to be cast out of the stern, veered the pinnace 
ashore, and as soon as she touched the sand, he alone leapt 
ashore in their sight, to declare that he durst set his foot a 
land: but stayed not among them, to let them know, that 
though he had not sufficient forces to conquer them, yet he 
had sufficient judgment to take heed of them. 

And therefore perceiving their intent, as soon as our Cap- 
tain was aboard, we hauled off upon our grapner and rid 

They presently came forth upon the sand[s], and sent a 
youth, as with a message from the Governor, to know, 
" What our intent was, to stay upon the coast ? " 

Our Captain answered : " He meant to traffic with them ; 
for he had tin, pewter, cloth, and other merchandise that 
they needed." 

The youth swam back again with this answer, and was 
presently returned, with another message : that, *' The King 
had forbidden to traffic with any foreign nation for any 
commodities, except powder and shot; of which, if he had 
any store, they would be his merchants." 

He answered, that " He was come from his countr}', to 
exchange his commodities for gold and silver, and is not 
purposed to return without his errand. They are like, in his 
opinion, to have little rest, if that, by fair means, they would 
not traffic with him." 

He gave this messenger a fair shirt for a reward, and so 
returned him : who rolled his shirt about his head and swam 
very speedily. 

We heard no answer all that day; and therefore toward 
night we went aboard our frigates and reposed ourselves, 
setting and keeping very orderly all that night our watch, 
with great and small shot. 

The next morning (22nd October) the wind, which had 
been westerly in the evening, altered to the Eastward. 

About the dawning of the day, we espied two sails turning 
towards us, whereupon our Captain weighed with his pin- 
naces, leaving the two frigates unmanned. But when we 
were come somewhat nigh them, the wind calmed, and we 


were fain to row towards them, till that approaching very 
nigh, we saw many heads peering over board. For, as we 
perceived, these two frigates were manned and set forth 
out of Cartagena, to fight with us, and, at least, to impeach 
or busy us; Avhilst by some means or other they might re- 
cover the frigates from us. 

But our Captain prevented both their drifts. For com- 
manding John Oxnam to stay with the one pinnace, to 
entertain these two Men-of-war; himself in the other made 
such speed, that he got to his frigates which he had left at 
anchor; and caused the Spaniards (who in the meantime had 
gotten aboard in a small canoe, thinking to have towed them 
within the danger of their shot) to make greater haste 
thence, than they did thither. 

For he found that in shifting thence, some of them were 
fain to swim aland (the canoe not being able to receive 
them) and had left their apparel, some their rapiers and 
targets, some their flasks and calivers behind them ; although 
they were towing away of one of them. 

Therefore considering that we could not man them, we 
sunk the one, and burnt the other, giving them to understand 
by this, that we perceived their secret practices. 

This being done, he returned to John Oxnam; who all 
this while lay by the Men-of-war without proffering to fight. 
And as soon as our Captain was come up to these frigates, 
the wind blew much from the sea, so that, we being betwixt 
the shore and them, were in a manner forced to bear room 
into the harbour before them, to the great joy of the 
Spaniards ; who beheld it ; in supposing, that we would still 
have fled before them. But as soon as we were in the 
harbour, and felt smooth water, our pinnaces, as we were 
assured of, getting the wind, we sought with them upon the 
advantage, so that after a few shot exchanged, and a storm 
rising, they were contented to press no nearer. Therefore 
as they let fall their anchors, we presently let drop our grap- 
ner in the wind of them: which the Spanish soldiers seeing, 
considering the disadvantage of the wind, the likelihood of 
the storm to continue, and small hope of doing any good, 
they were glad to retire themselves to the town. 

But by reason of the foul and tempestuous weather, we 


rode therein four days, feeling great cold, by reason we had 
such sore rains with westerly wind, and so little succour in 
our pinnaces. 

The fifth day (27th October) there came in a frigate from 
the sea, which seeing us make towards her, ran herself 
ashore, unhanging her rudder and taking away her sails, 
that she might not easily be carried away. But when we 
were come up to her, we perceived about a hundred horse 
and foot, with their furniture, come down to the point of 
the Main, where we interchanged some shot with them. One 
of our great shot passed so near a brave cavalier of theirs, 
that thereby they were occasioned to advise themselves, and 
retreat into the woods : where they might sufficiently defend 
and rescue the frigate from us, and annoy us also, if we 
stayed long about her. 

Therefore we concluded to go to sea again, putting forth 
through Boca Chica, with intent to take down our masts, 
upon hope of fair weather, and to ride under the rocks called 
Las Serenas, which are two leagues off at sea, as we had 
usually done aforetime, so that they could not discern us 
from the rocks. But, there, the sea was mightily grown, 
that we were forced to take the harbour again; where we 
remained six days, notwithstanding the Spaniards grieved 
greatly at our abode there so long. 

They put (2nd November) another device in practice to 
endanger us. 

For they sent forth a great shallop, a fine gundeloe, and 
a great canoe, with certain Spaniards with shot, and many 
Indians with poisoned arrows, as it seemed, with intent to 
begin some fight, and then to fly. For as soon as we rowed 
toward them and interchanged shot, they presently retired 
and went ashore into the woods, where an ambush of some 
sixty shot were laid for us: besides two pinnaces and a 
frigate warping towards us, which were manned as the rest. 
They attempted us very boldly, being assisted by those 
others, which from out of the wood, had gotten aboard the 
gundeloe and canoe, and seeing us bearing from them (which 
we did in respect of the ambuscado), they encouraged them- 
selves and assured their fellows of the day. 

But our Captain weighing this their attempt, and being 


out of danger of their shot from the land, commanding his 
other pinnace to be brought ahead of him, and to let fall 
their grapners each ahead the other, environed both the 
pinnaces with bonnets, as for a close fight, and then wheaved 
[waved'] them aboard him. 

They kept themselves upon their oars at caliver-shot dis- 
tance, spending powder apace; as we did some two or three 
hours. We had only one of our men wounded in that fight. 
What they had is luiknown to us, but we saw their pinnaces 
shot through in diA^ers places, and the powder of one of 
them took fire; whereupon we weighed, intending to bear 
room to overrun them : which they perceiving, and thinking 
that we would have boarded them, rowed aAvay amain to 
the defence they had in the wood, the rather because they 
were disappointed of their help that they expected from the 
frigate; which was warping towards us, but by reason of 
the much wind that blew, could not come to offend us or 
succour them. 

Thus seeing that we were still molested, and no hope 
remained of any purchase to be had in this place any longer; 
because we were now so notably made known in those parts, 
and because our victuals grew scant: as soon as the weather 
waxed somewhat better (the whxd continuing always west- 
erly, so that we could not return to our ships) our Captain 
thought best to go (3rd November) to the Eastward, towards 
Rio Grande [Magdalena] long the coast, where we had been 
before, and found great store of victuals. 

But when after two days' sailing, we were arrived (5th 
November) at the villages of store, where before we had 
furnished ourselves with abundance of hens, sheep, calves, 
hogs, &c. ; now we found bare nothing, not so much as any 
people left: for that they, by the Spaniards' commandments, 
had fled to the mountains, and had driven away all their 
cattle, that we might not be relieved by them. Herewith 
being very sorry, because much of our victuals in our pin- 
naces was spoilt by the foul weather at sea and rains in 
harbour. A frigate being descried at sea revived us, and put 
us in some hope for the time, that in her we should find 
sufficient ; and thereupon it may easily be guessed, how much 
we laboured to recover her: but when we had boarded her. 


and understood that she had neither meat nor money, but 
that she was bound for Rio Grande to take in provision upon 
bills, our great hope converted into grief. 

We endured with our allowance seven or eight days more, 
proceeding to the Eastward, and bearing room for Santa 
Marta, upon hope to find some shipping in the road, or 
limpets on the rocks, or succour against the storm in that 
good harbour. Being arrived; and seeing no shipping; we 
anchored under the wester [n] point, where is high land, and, 
as we thought, free in safety from the town, which is in the 
bottom of the bay : not intending to land there, because we 
knew that it was fortified, and that they had intelligence 
of us. 

But the Spaniards (knowing us to be Men-of-war, and 
misliking that we should shroud under their rocks without 
their leave) had conveyed some thirty or forty shot among 
the cliffs, Λvhich annoyed us so spitefully and so unre- 
vengedly, for that they lay hidden behind the rocks, but we 
lay open to them, that we were soon Aveary of our harbour, 
and enforced (for all the storm Avithout and want within) 
to put to sea. Which though these enemies of ours were 
well contented withal, yet for a farewell, as we came open 
of the town, they sent us a culverin shot ; which made a near 
escape, for it fell between our pinnaces, as we were upon 
conference of what was best to be done. 

The company advised that if it pleased him, they might 
put themselves a land, some place to the Eastward to get 
victuals, and rather hope for courtesy from the country- 
people, than continue at sea, in so long cold, and great a 
storm in so leaky a pinnace. But our Captain would in no 
wise like of that advice; he thought it better to bear up 
towards Rio de [la] Hacha, or Coriqao ICuragao], with hope 
to have plenty without great resistance : because he knew, 
either of the islands were not very populous, or else it would 
be very likely that there would be found ships of victual in 
a readiness. 

The company of the other pinnace answered, that "They 
would willingly follow him through the world; but in this 
they could not see how either their pinnaces should live in 
that sea, without being eaten up in that storm, or they them- 


selves able to endure so long time, with so slender provision 
as they had, viz., only one gammon of bacon and thirty 
pounds of biscuit for eighteen men." 

Our Captain replied, that " They were better provided 
than himself was, who had but one gammon of bacon, and 
forty pounds of biscuit for his twenty- four men; and there- 
fore he doubted not but they Avould take such part as he 
did, and willingly depend upon GOD's Almighty providence, 
which never faileth them that trust in Him."' 

With that he hoisted his foresail, and set his course for 
Coriςao ; which the rest perceiving with sorrowful hearts in 
respect of the weak pinnace, yet desirous to follow their 
Captain, consented to take the same course. 

We had not sailed past three leagues, but we had espied a 
sail plying to the Westward, with her two courses, to our 
great joy: who vowed together, that we would have her, or 
else it should cost us dear. 

Bearing with her, we found her to be a Spanish ship of 
above 90 tons, which being wheaved Iwaved] amain by us, 
despised our summons, and shot off her ordnance at us. 

The sea went very high, so that it was not for us to at- 
tempt to board her, and therefore we made fit small sail to 
attend upon her, and keep her company to her small con- 
tent, till fairer weather might lay the sea. We spent not 
past two hours in our attendance, till it pleased GOD, after 
a great shower, to send us a reasonable calm, so that we 
might use our pieces [i. e., bases'] and approach her at 
pleasure, in such sort that in short time we had taken her; 
finding her laden with victuals well powdered [saltedl and 
dried: which at that present we received as sent us of GOD's 
great mercy. 

After all things were set in order, and that the wind 
increased towards night, we plied off and on, till day (13th 
November), at what time our Captain sent in Ellis Hixom, 
who had then charge of his pinnace, to search out some 
harbour along the coast; who having found out a little one, 
some ten or twelve leagues to the east of Santa Marta, 
where in sounding he had good ground and sufficient water, 
presently returned, and our Captain brought in his new 
prize. Then by promising liberty, and all the apparel to the 


Spaniards which we had taken, if they would bring us to 
water and fresh victuals; the rather by their means, we ob- 
tained of 4he inhabitants (Indians) what they had, which 
was plentiful. These Indians were clothed and governed by 
a Spaniard, which dwelt in the next town, not past a league 
off. We stayed there all day, watering and wooding, and 
providing things necessary, by giving content and satisfac- 
tion of the Indians. But towards night our captain called 
all of us aboard (only leaving the Spaniards lately taken in 
the prize ashore, according to our promise made them, to 
their great content; who acknowledged that our Captain did 
them a far greater favour in setting them freely at liberty, 
than he had done them displeasure in taking their ship), 
and so set sail. 

The sickness which had begun to kindle among us, two or 
three days before, did this day shew itself, in Charles Glub, 
one of our Quarter-Masters, a very tall man, and a right 
good mariner; taken away, to the great grief both of Cap- 
tain and company. What the cause of this malady was, we 
knew not of certainty, we imputed it to the cold which our men 
had taken, lying without succour in the pinnaces. But how- 
soever it was, thus it pleased GOD to visit us, and yet in favour 
to restore unto health all the rest of our company, that were 
touched with this disease ; which were not a few. 

The next morning (15th November) being fair weather, 
though the wind continued contrary, our Captain commanded 
the Minion, his lesser pinnace, to hasten away before him 
towards his ships at Fort Diego within the Cabegas [Head- 
lands'\ to carry news of his coming, and to put all things in a 
readiness for our land journey, if they heard anything of the 
Fleet's arrival by the Cimaroons ; giving the Minion charge 
if they wanted wine, to take St. Bernards in their way, and 
there take in some such portion as they thought good, of 
the wines which we had there hidden in the sand. 

We plied to windwards, as near as Λνε could, so that 
within seven-night after the Minion departed from us, we 
came (22nd November) to St. Bernards, finding but twelve 
botijos of wine of all the store we left, which had escaped 
the curious search of the enemy, who had been there; for 
they were deep in the ground. 


Within four or five days after, we came (27th November) 
to our ship, where we found all other things in good order; 
but received very heavy news of the death of John Drake, 
our Captain's brother, and another young man called 
Richard Allen, which were both slain at one time (9th 
October), as they attempted the boarding of a frigate, within 
two days after our departing from them. 

The manner of it, as we learned by examination of the 
company, was this. When they saw this frigate at sea, 
as they were going towards their fort with planks to make 
the platforms, the company were very importunate on him, 
to give chase and set upon this frigate, which they deemed 
had been a fit booty for them. But he told them, that they 
"wanted weapons to assail; they knew not how the frigate 
was provided, they had their boats loaded with planks, to 
finish that his brother had commanded." But when this 
would not satisfy them, but that still they urged him with 
words and supposals : " If you will needs," said he, " ad- 
venture ! it shall never be said that I will be hindmost, 
neither shall you report to my brother, that you lost your 
voyage by any cowardice you found in me ! " 

Thereupon every man shifted as they might for the time: 
and heaving their planks overboard, took them such poor 
weapons as they had: viz., a broken pointed rapier, one old 
visgee, and a rusty caliver: John Drake took the rapier, and 
made a gauntlet of his pillow, Richard Allen the visgee, 
both standing at the head of the pinnace, called Eton. 
Robert took the caliver and so boarded. But they found the 
frigate armed round about with a close fight of hides, full 
of pikes and calivers, which were discharged in their faces, 
and deadly wounded those that were in the fore-ship, John 
Drake in the belly, and Richard Allen in the head. But 
notwithstanding their wounds, they with oars shifted off the 
pinnace, got clear of the frigate, and with all haste recovered 
their ship: where within an hour after, this young man of 
great hope, ended his days, greatly lamented of all the 

Thus having moored our ships fast, our Captain resolved 
to keep himself close without being descried, until he might 


hear of the coming of the Spanish Fleet; and therefore set 
no more to sea; but supplied his wants, both for his own 
company and the Cimaroons, out of his foresaid magazine, 
beside daily out of the woods, with wild hogs, pheasants, and 
guanas: continuing in health (GOD be praised) all the 
meantime, which was a month at least; till at length about 
the beginning of January, half a score of our company fell 
down sick together (3rd Jan. 1573), and the most of them 
died within two or three days. So long that we had thirty 
at a time sick of this calenture, which attacked our men, 
either by reason of the sudden change from cold to heat, 
or by reason of brackish water which had been taken in 
by our pinnace, through the sloth of their men in the mouth 
of the river, not rowing further in where the water \vas 

Among the rest, Joseph Drake, another of his brethren, 
died in our Captain's arms, of the same disease : of which, 
that the cause might be the better discerned, and con- 
sequently remedied, to the relief of others, by our Captain's 
appointment he was ripped open by the surgeon, who found 
his liver swollen, his heart as it were sodden, and his guts 
all fair. This was the first and last experiment that our 
Captain made of anatomy in this voyage. 

The Surgeon that cut him open, over-lived him not past 
four days, although he was not touched with that sickness, 
of which he had been recovered about a month before: but 
only of an over-bold practice which he would needs make 
upon himself, by receiving an over-strong purgation of his 
own device, after which taken, he never spake ; nor his Boy 
recovered the health which he lost by tasting it, till he saw 

The Cimaroons, who, as is before said, had been enter- 
tained by our Captain in September last, and usually repaired 
to our ship, during all the time of our absence, ranged the 
country up and down, between Nombre de Dios and us, 
to learn what they might for us; whereof they gave our 
Captain advertisement, from time to time; as now partic- 
ularly, certain of them let him understand, that the Fleet 
had certainly arrived in Nombre de Dios. 

Therefore he sent (30th January) the Lion, to the sea- 


most islands of the Cativaas, to descry the truth of the re- 
port: by reason it must needs be, that if the Fleet were in 
Nombre de Dios, all frigates of the country would repair 
thitherward with victuals. 

The Lion, within a few days descried that she was sent 
for, espying a frigate, which she presently boarded and 
took, laden with maize, hens, and pompions from Tolou; 
who assured us of the whole truth of the arrival of the 
Fleet: in this frigate were taken one woman and twelve 
men, of whom one was the Scrivano of Tolou. These we 
used very courteously, keeping them diligently guarded 
from the deadly hatred of the Cimaroons ; who sought daily 
by all means they could, to get them of our Captain, that 
they might cut their throats, to revenge their wrongs and 
injuries which the Spanish nation had done them: but our 
Captain persuaded them not to touch them, or give them 
ill countenance, while they were in his charge; and took 
order for their safety, not only in his presence, but also in 
his absence. For when he had prepared to take his journey 
for Panama, by land; he gave Ellis Hixom charge of his 
own ship and company, and especially of those Spaniards 
whom he had put into the great prize, which was hauled 
ashore to the island, which we termed Slaughter Island (be- 
cause so many of our men died there), and used as a store- 
house for ourselves, and a prison for our enemies. 

All things thus ordered, our Captain conferring with his 
company, and the chiefest of the Cimaroons, what provi- 
sions were to be prepared for this great and long journey, 
what kind of weapons, what store of victuals, and what man- 
ner of apparel: was especially advised, to carry as 
great store of shoes as possible he might, by reason of so 
many rivers with stone and gravel as they were to pass. 
Which, accordingly providing, prepared his company for 
that journey, entering it upon Shrove-Tuesday (3rd Feb- 
ruary). At what time, there had died twenty-eight of our 
men, and a few whole men were left aboard with Ellis 
Hixom to keep the ship, and attend the sick, and guard 
the prisoners. 

At his departure our Captain gave this Master straight 
charge, in any case not to trust any messenger, that should 


come in his name with any tokens, unless he brought his 
handwriting: which he knew could not be counterfeited by 
the Cimaroons or Spaniards. 

We were in all forty-eight, of which eighteen only were 
English ; the rest were Cimaroons, which beside their arms, 
bare every one of them, a great quantity of victuals 
and provision, supplying our want of carriage in so long a 
march, so that we were not troubled with anything but 
otrr furniture. And because they could not carry enough 
to suffice us altogether; therefore (as they promised before) 
so by the way with their arrows, they provided for us com- 
petent store from time to time. 

They have every one of them two sorts of arrows: the 
one to defend himself and offend the enemy, the other to 
kill his victuals. These for fight are somewhat like the 
Scottish arrow; only somewhat longer, and headed with 
iron, wood, or fish bones. But the arrows for provision are 
of three sorts, the first serveth to kill any great beast near 
[at] hand, as ox, stag, or wild boar: this hath a head of iron 
of a pound and a half weight, shaped in form like the head 
of a javelin or boar-spear, as sharp as any knife, making 
so large and deep a wound as can hardly be believed of 
him that hath not seen it. The second serveth for lesser 
beasts, and hath a head of three-quarters of a pound: this 
he most usually shooteth. The third serveth for all manner 
of birds: it hath a head of an ounce weight. And these 
heads though they be of iron only, yet are they so cun- 
ningly tempered, that they will continue a very good edge 
a long time : and though they be turned sometimes, yet they 
will never or seldom break. The necessity in which they 
stand hereof continually causeth them to have iron in far 
greater account than gold: and no man among them is of 
greater estimation, than he that can most perfeciJy give 
this temper unto it. 

Every day we were marching by sun-rising. We con- 
tinued till ten in the forenoon: then resting (ever near some 
river) till past twelve, we marched till four, and then by 
some river's side, we reposed ourselves in such houses, as 
either we found prepared heretofore by them, when they 


travelled through these woods, or they daily built very 
readily for us in this manner. 

As soon as we came to the place where we intended to 
lodge, the Cimaroons, presently laying down their burdens, 
fell to cutting of forks or posts, and poles or rafters, and 
palmito boughs, or plantain leaves ; and with great speed set 
up to the number of six houses. For every of which, they 
first fastened deep into the ground, three or four great posts 
with forks: upon them, they laid one transom, which was 
commonly about twenty feet, and made the sides, in the 
manner of the roofs of our country houses, thatching it 
close with those aforesaid leaves, which keep out water a 
long time : observing always that in the lower ground, where 
greater heat was, they left some three or four feet open 
unthatched below, and made the houses, or rather roofs, 
so many feet the higher. But in the hills, where the air 
was more piercing and the nights cold, they made our rooms 
always lower, and thatched them close to the ground, leav- 
ing only one door to enter in, and a lover [louvre'] hole for 
a vent, in the midst of the roof. In every [one] of these, 
they made four several lodgings, and three fires, one in the 
midst, and one at each end of every house : so that the room 
was most temperately warm, and nothing annoyed with 
smoke, partly by reason of the nature of the wood which they 
use to burn, yielding very little smoke, partly by reason of 
their artificial making of it: as firing the wood cut in length 
like our billets at the ends, and joining them together so 
close, that though no flame or fire did appear, yet the heat 
continued without intermission. 

Near many of the rivers where we stayed or lodged, we 
found sundry sorts of fruits, which we might use with great 
pleasure and safety temperately: Mammeas, Guayvas, Pal- 
mitos, Pinos, Oranges, Lemons, and divers other ; from eating 
of which, they dissuaded us in any case, unless we eat very 
few of them, and those first dry roasted, as Plantains, 
Potato [e]s, and such like. 

In journeying, as oft as by chance they found any wild 
swine, of which those hills and valleys have store, they would 
ordinarily, six at a time, deliver their burdens to the rest of 
their fellows, pursue, kill and bring away after us, as much 


as they could carry, and time permitted. One day as we 
travelled, the Cimaroons found an otter, and prepared it to be 
drest: our Captain marvelling at it, Pedro, our chief Cima- 
roon, asked him, " Are you a man of war, and in want ; and 
yet doubt whether this be meat, that hath blood? " 

Herewithal our Captain rebuked himself secretly, that he 
had so slightly considered of it before. 

The third day of our journey (6th February), they brought 
us to a town of their own, seated near a fair river, on the side 
of a hill, environed with a dyke of eight feet broad, and a 
thick mud wall of ten feet high, sufficient to stop a sudden 
surpriser. It had one long and broad street, lying east and 
west, and two other cross streets of less breadth and length : 
there were in it some five or six and fifty households; which 
were kept so clean and sweet, that not only the houses, but 
the very streets were very pleasant to behold. In this town 
we saw they lived very civilly and cleanly. For as soon as 
we came thither, they washed themselves in the river; and 
changed their apparel, as also their women do wear, which 
was very fine and fitly made somewhat after the Spanish 
fashion, though nothing so costly. This town is distant thirty- 
five leagues from Nombre de Dios and forty-five from Pan- 
ama. It is plentifully stored with many sorts of beasts and 
fowl, with plenty of maize and sundry fruits. 

Touching their affection in religion, they have no kind 
of priests, only they held the Cross in great reputation. But 
at our Captain's persuasion, they were contented to leave 
their crosses, and to learn the Lord's Prayer, and to be in- 
structed in some measure concerning GOD's true worship. 
They kept a continual watch in four parts, three miles off 
their town, to prevent the mischiefs, which the Spaniards 
intend against them, by the conducting of some of their own 
coats \_i.e., Cimaroons'], which having been taken by the 
Spaniards have been enforced thereunto: wherein, as we 
learned, sometimes the Spaniards have prevailed over them, 
especially when they lived less careful ; but since, they 
[watch] against the Spaniards, whom they killed like beasts, 
as often as they take them in the woods; having aforehand 
understood of their coming. 

We stayed with them that night, and the next day (7th 


February) till noon; during which time, they related unto 
us divers very strange accidents, that had fallen out between 
them and the Spaniards, namely [especially} one. A gallant 
gentleman entertained by the Governors of the country, un- 
dertook, the year last past [1572], with 150 soldiers, to put 
this town to the sword, men, women, and children. Being 
conducted to it by one of them, that had been taken prisoner, 
and won by great gifts; he surprised it half an hour before 
day, by which occasion most of the men escaped, but many 
of their women and children were slaughtered, or taken : but 
the same morning by sun rising (after that their guide was 
slain, in following another man's wife, and that the Cima- 
roons had assembled themselves in their strength) they be- 
haved themselves in such sort, and drove the Spaniards to 
such extremity, that what with the disadvantage of the woods 
(having lost their guide and thereby their way), what with 
famine and want, there escaped not past thirty of them, to 
return answer to those which sent them. 

Their king [chief} dwelt in a city within sixteen leagues 
south-east of Panama; which is able to make 1,700 fighting 

They all intreated our Captain very earnestly, to make his 
abode with them some two or three days ; promising that by 
that time, they would double his strength if he thought good. 
But he thanking them for their offer, told them, that "He 
could stay no longer! It was more than time to prosecute 
his purposed voyage. As for strength, he would wish no 
more than he had, although he might have presently twenty 
times as much ! " Which they took as proceeding not only 
from kindness, but also from magnanimity; and therefore, 
they marched forth, that afternoon, with great good will. 

This was the order of our march. Four of those Cima- 
roons that best knew the ways, went about a mile distance 
before us, breaking boughs as they went, to be a direction 
to those that followed; but with great silence, which they 
also required us to keep. 

Then twelve of them were as it were our Vanguard, other 
twelve, our Rearward. We with their two Captains in the 

All the way was through woods very cool and pleasant, by 


reason of those goodly and high trees, that grow there so 
thick, that it is cooler travelling there under them in that 
hot region, than it is in the most parts of England in the 
summer time. This [also] gave a special encouragement 
unto us all, that we understood there was a great Tree about 
the midway, from which, we might at once discern the North 
Sea from whence we came, and the South Sea whither we 
were going. 

The fourth day following (nth February) we came to the 
height of the desired hill, a very high hill, lying East and 
West, like a ridge between the two seas, about ten of the 
clock: where [Pedro] the chiefest of these Cimaroons took 
our Captain by the hand, and prayed him to follow him, if 
he was desirous to see at once the two seas, which he had 
so long longed for. 

Here was that goodly and great high Tree, in which they 
had cut and made divers steps, to ascend up near unto the 
top, where they had also made a convenient bower, wherein 
ten or twelve men might easily sit: and from thence we 
might, without any difficulty, plainly see the Atlantic Ocean 
whence now we came, and the South Atlantic [i.e.. Pacific 
Ocean'] so much desired. South and north of this Tree, 
they had felled certain trees, that the prospect might be the 
clearer; and near about the Tree there were divers strong 
houses, that had been built long before, as well by other 
Cimaroons as by these, which usually pass that way, as being 
inhabited in divers places in those waste countries. 

After our Captain had ascended to this bower, with the 
chief Cimaroon, and having, as it pleased GOD, at that time, 
by reason of the brize [hreeae], a very fair day, had seen 
that sea, of which he had heard such golden reports: he 
" besought Almighty GOD of His goodness, to give him life 
and leave to sail once in an English ship, in that sea ! " And 
then calling up all the rest of our [17 EnglisJi] men, he 
acquainted John Oxnam especially with this his petition and 
purpose, if it would please GOD to grant him that happiness. 
Who understanding it, presently protested, that " unless our 
Captain did beat him from his company, he would follow 
him, by GOD's grace ! " 

Thus all, thoroughly satisfied with the sight of the seas, 


descended; and after our repast, continued our ordinary 
march through woods, yet two days more as before : without 
any great variety. But then (13th February) we came to 
march in a champion country, where the grass groweth, not 
only in great lengths as the knot grass groweth in many 
places, but to such height, that the inhabitants are fain to 
burn it thrice in the year, that it may be able to feed the 
cattle, of which they have thousands. 

For it is a kind of grass with a stalk, as big as a great 
wheaten reed, which hath a blade issuing from the top of 
it, on which though the cattle feed, yet it groweth every day 
higher, until the top be too high for an ox to reach. Then 
the inhabitants are wont to put fire to it, for the space of 
five or six miles together; which notwithstanding after it is 
thus burnt, within three days, springeth up fresh like green 
com. Such is the great f ruitfulness of the soil : by reason 
of the evenness of the day and night, and the rich dews 
which fall every morning. 

In these three last days' march in the champion, as we 
past over the hills, we might see Panama five or six times a 
day; and the last day (14th February) we saw the ships 
riding in the road. 

But after that we were come within a day's journey of 
Panama, our Captain (understanding by the Cimaroons that 
the Dames of Panama are wont to send forth hunters and 
fowlers for taking of sundry dainty fowl, which the land 
yieldeth; by whom if we marched not very heedfully, we 
might be descried) caused all his company to march out of 
all ordinary way, and that with as great heed, silence, and 
secrecy, as possibly they might, to the grove (which was 
agreed on four days before) lying within a league of 
Panama, where we might lie safely undiscovered near the 
highway, that leadeth from thence to Nombre de Dios. 

Thence we sent a chosen Cimaroon, one that had served a 
master in Panama before time, in such apparel as the 
Negroes of Panama do use to wear, to be our espial, to go 
into the town, to learn the certain night, and time of the 
night, when the carriers laded the Treasure from the King's 
Treasure House to Nombre de Dios. For they are wont to 
take their journey from Panama to Venta Cruz, which is six 


leagues, ever by night; because the country is all champion, 
and consequently by day very hot. But from Venta Cruz to 
Nombre de Dios as oft as they travel by land with their 
treasure, they travel always by day and not by night, be- 
cause all that way is full of woods, and therefore very fresh 
and cool ; unless the Cimaroons happily encounter them, and 
made them sweat with fear, as sometimes they have done: 
whereupon they are glad to guard their Recoes [i.e., Recuas, 
the Spanish word for a drove of beasts of burden; meaning 
here, a mule train,'] with soldiers as they pass that way. 

This last day, our Captain did behold and view the most 
of all that fair city, discerning the large street which lieth 
directly from the sea into the land, South and North. 

By three of the clock, we came to this grove ; passing for 
the more secrecy alongst a certain river, which at that time 
was almost dried up. 

Having disposed of ourselves in the grove, we despatched 
our spy an hour before night, so that by the closing in of 
the evening, he might be in the city; as he was. Whence 
presently he returned unto us, that which very happily he 
understood by companions of his. That the Treasurer of 
Lima intending to pass into Spain in the first Adviso (which 
was a ship of 350 tons, a very good sailer), was ready that 
night to take his journey towards Nombre de Dios, with his 
daughter and family : having fourteen mules in company : 
of which eight were laden with gold, and one with jewels. 
And farther, that there were two other Recuas, of fifty 
mules in each, laden with victuals for the most part, with 
some little quantity of silver, to come forth that night after 
the other. 

There are twenty-eight of these Recuas; the greatest of 
them is of seventy mules, the less of fifty; unless some 
particular man hire for himself, ten, twenty, or thirty, as he 
hath need. 

Upon this notice, we forthwith marched four leagues, till 
we came within two leagues of Venta Cruz, in which march 
two of our Cimaroons which were sent before, by scent of 
his match, found and brought a Spaniard, whom they had 
found asleep by the way, by scent of the said match, and 
drawing near thereby, heard him taking his breath as he 


slept; and being but one, they fell upon him, stopped his 
mouth from crying, put out his match, and bound him so, 
that they well near strangled him by that time he was 
brought unto us. 

By examining him, we found all that to be true, which our 
spy had reported to us, and that he was a soldier entertained 
with others by the Treasurer, for guard and conduct of this 
treasure, from Venta Cruz to Nombre de Dios. 

This soldier having learned who our Captain was, took 
courage, and was bold to make two requests unto him. The 
one that "He would command his Cimaroons which hated 
the Spaniards, especially the soldiers extremely, to spare his 
life; which he doubted not but they would do at his charge." 
The other was, that "seeing he was a soldier, and assured 
him, that they should have that night more gold, besides 
jewels, and pearls of great price, then all they could carry 
(if not, then he was to be dealt with how they would) ; but if 
they all found it so, then it might please our Captain to give 
unto him, as much as might suffice for him and his mistress 
to live upon, as he had heard our Captain had done to divers 
others: for which he would make his name as famous as 
any of them which had received like favour," 

Being at the place appointed, our Captain with half his 
men [8 English and 15 Cimaroons], lay on one side of the 
way, about fifty paces off in the long grass; John Oxnam 
with the Captain of the Cimaroons, and the other half, lay 
on the other side of the way, at the like distance: but so far 
behind, that as occasion served, the former company might 
take the foremost mules by the heads, and the hindmost 
because the mules tied together, are always driven one after 
another; and especially that if we should have need to use 
our weapons that night, we might be sure not to endamage 
our fellows. We had not lain thus in ambush much above 
an hour, but we heard the Recuas coming both from the 
city to Venta Cruz, and from Venta Cruz to the city, which 
hath a very common and great trade, when the fleets are 
there. We heard them by reason they delight much to have 
deep-sounding bells, which, in a still night, are heard very 
far off. 

Now though there v^ere as great charge given as might be, 


that none of our men should shew or stir themselves, but 
let all that came from Venta Cruz to pass quietly ; yea, their 
Recuas also, because we knew that they brought nothing but 
merchandise from thence: yet one of our men, called 
Robert Pike, having drunken too much aqua vita without 
water, forgot himself, and enticing a Cimaroon forth with 
him was gone hard to the way, with intent to have shown 
his forwardness on the foremost mules. And when a 
cavalier from Venta Cruz, well mounted, with his page run- 
ning at his stirrup, passed by, unadvisedly he rose up to see 
what he was: but the Cimaroon of better discretion pulled 
him down, and lay upon him, that he might not discover 
them any more. Yet by this, the gentleman had taken notice 
by seeing one half all in white: for that wei had all put our 
shirts over our other apparel, that we might be sure to know 
our own men in the pell mell in the night. By means of this 
sight, the cavalier putting spurs to his horse, rode a false 
gallop; as desirous not only himself to be free of this doubt 
which he imagined, but also to give advertisement to others 
that they might avoid it. 

Our Captain who had heard and observed by reason of the 
hardness of the ground and stillness of the night, the change 
of this gentleman's trot to a gallop, suspected that he was 
discovered, but could not imagine by whose fault, neither 
did the time give him leisure to search. And therefore con- 
sidering that it might be, by reason of the danger of the 
place, well known to ordinary travellers : we lay still in ex- 
pectation of the Treasurer's coming; and he had come for- 
ward to us, but that this horseman meeting him, and |(as we 
afterwards learnt by the other Recuas) making report to 
him, what he had seen presently that night, what he heard 
of Captain Drake this long time, and what he conjectured 
to be most likely : viz., that the said Captain Drake, or some 
for him, disappointed of his expectation, of getting any 
great treasure, both at Nombre de Dios and other places, 
was by some means or other come by land, in covert through 
the woods, unto this place, to speed of his purpose: and 
thereupon persuaded him to turn his Recua out of the way, 
and let the other Recuas which were coming after to pass 
on. They were whole Recuas, and loaded but with victuals 


for the most part, so that the loss of them were far less if 
the worst befell, and yet they should serve to discover them 
as well as the best. 

Thus by the recklessness of one of our company, and by 
the carefulness of this traveller; we were disappointed of a 
most rich booty: which is to be thought GOD would not 
should be taken, for that, by all likelihood, it was well 
gotten by that Treasurer. 

The other two Recuas were no sooner come up to us, but 
being stayed and seized on. One of the Chief Carriers, a 
very sensible fellow, told our Captain by what means we 
were discovered, and counselled us to shift for ourselves 
betimes, unless we were able to encounter the whole force 
of the city and country before day would be about us. 

It pleased us but little, that we were defeated of our 
golden Recua, and that in these we could find not past 
some two horse-loads of silver: but it grieved our Captain 
much more, that he was discovered, and that by one of his 
own men. But knowing it bootless to grieve at things past, 
and having learned by experience, that all safety in ex- 
tremity, consisteth in taking of time [i. e., hy the forelock, 
making an instant decision] : after no long consultation 
with Pedro the chief of our Cimaroons, who declared that 
" there were but two ways for him : the one to travel back 
again the same secret way they came, for four leagues 
space into the woods, or else to march forward, by the 
highway to Venta Cruz, being two leagues, and make a 
way with his sword through the enemies." He resolved, 
considering the long and weary marches that we had taken, 
and chiefly that last evening and day before: to take now 
the shortest and readiest way: as choosing rather to en- 
counter his enemies while he had strength remaining, than 
to be encountered or chased when we should be worn out 
with weariness: principally now having the mules to ease 
them that would, some part of the way. 

Therefore commanding all to refresh themselves moder- 
ately with such store of victuals as we had here in abun- 
dance: he signified his resolution and reason to them all: 
asking Pedro by name, " Whether he would give his hand 
not to forsake laim?" because he knew that the rest of the 


Cimaroons would also then stand fast and firm, so faithful 
are they to their captain. He being very glad of his reso- 
lution, gave our Captain his hand, and vowed that "He 
would rather die at his foot, than leave him to the enemies, 
if he held this course." 

So having strengthened ourselves for the time, we took 
our journey towards Venta Cruz, with help of the mules 
till we came within a mile of the town, where we turned 
away the Recuas, charging the conductors of them, not to 
follow us upon pain of their lives. 

There, the way is cut through the woods, above ten or 
twelve feet broad, so as two Recuas may pass one by an- 
other. The fruitfulness of the soil, causeth that with often 
shredding and ridding the way, those woods grow as thick 
as our thickest hedges in England that are oftenest cut. 

To the midst of this wood, a company of soldiers, which 
continually lay in that town, to defend it against the Cima- 
roons, were come forth, to stop us if they might on the 
way; if not, to retreat to their strength, and there to expect 
us. A Convent {Monastery'] of Friars, of whom one was 
become a Leader, joined with these soldiers, to take such 
part as they did. 

Our Captain understanding by our two Cimaroons, which 
with great heedfulness and silence, marched now, but about 
half a flight-shot before us, that it was time for us to arm 
and take us to our weapons, for they knew the enemy was 
at hand, by smelling of their match and hearing of a noise: 
had given us charge, that no one of us should make any 
shot, until the Spaniards had first spent their volley : which 
he thought they would not do before they had spoken, as 
indeed fell out. 

For as soon as we were within hearing, a Spanish Captain 
cried out, " Hoo ! " Our Captain answered him likewise, 
and being demanded " Que gentet " replied " Englishmen ! " 
But when the said Commander charged him, " In the name 
of the King of Spain, his Master, that we should yield our- 
selves; promising in the word and faith of a Gentleman 
Soldier, that if we would so do, he would use us with all 
courtesy." Our Captain drawing somewhat near him said: 
*' That for the honour of the Queen of England, his Mistress, 


he must have passage that way," and therewithal discharged 
his pistol towards hira. 

Upon this, they presently shot off their whole volley; 
which, though it lightly wounded our Captain, and divers 
of our men, yet it caused death to one only of our company 
called John Harris, who was so powdered with hail-shot, 
(v/hich they all used for the most part as it seemed, or else 
" quartered," for that our men were hurt with that kind) 
that we could not recover his life, though he continued all 
that day afterwards with us. 

Presently as our Captain perceived their shot to come 
slacking, as the latter drops of a great shower of rain, with 
his whistle he gave us his usual signal, to answer them with 
our shot and arrows, and so march onwards upon the 
enemy, with intent to come to handy-strokes, and to have 
joined with them; whom Λvhen we found retired as to a 
place of some better strength, he increased his pace to pre- 
vent them if he might. Which the Cimaroons perceiving, 
although by terror of the shot continuing, they were for the 
time stept aside; yet as soon as they discerned by hearing 
that we marched onward, they all rushed forward one after 
another, traversing the way, with their arrows ready in 
their bows, and their manner of country dance or leap, very 
singing Υό peho! Υό peho and so got before us, where 
they continued their leap and song, after the manner of 
their own country wars, till they and we overtook some of 
the enemy, who near the town's end, had conveyed them- 
selves within the woods, to have taken their stand at us, as 

But our Cimaroons now thoroughly encouraged, when 
they saw our resolution, brake in through the thickets, on 
both sides of them, forcing them to fly. Friars and all!: 
although divers of our men were wounded, and one Cima- 
roon especially was run through with one of their pikes, 
whose courage and mind served him so well notwithstand- 
ing, that he revenged his own death ere he died, by killing 
him that had given him that deadly wound. 

We, with all speed, following this chase, entered the town 
of Venta Cruz, being of about forty or fifty houses, which 
had both a Governor and other officers and some fair 


houses, with many storehouses large and strong for the 
wares, which brought thither from Nombre de Dios, by the 
river of Chagres, so to be transported by mules to Panama: 
beside the Monastery, where we found above a thousand 
bulls and pardons, newly sent from Rome. 

In those houses we found three gentlewomen, which had 
lately been delivered of children there, though their dwell- 
ings were in Nombre de Dios; because it hath been ob- 
served of long time, as they reported to us, that no Span- 
iard or white woman could ever be delivered in Nombre 
de Dios with safety of their children but that within two 
or three days they died ; notwithstanding that being born 
and brought up in this Venta Cruz or Panama five or six 
years, and then brought to Nombre de Dios, if they es- 
caped sickness the first or second month, they commonly 
lived in it as healthily as in any other place : although no 
stranger (as they say) can endure there any long time, 
without great danger of death or extreme sickness. 

Though at our first coming into the town with arms so 
suddenly, these ladies were in great fear, yet because our 
Captain had given straight charge to all the Cimaroons 
(that while they \vere in his company, they should never 
hurt any woman nor man that had not a weapon in his 
hand to do them hurt; which they earnestly promised, and 
no less faithfully performed) they had no wrong offered 
them, nor any thing taken from them, to the worth of a 
garter; wherein, albeit they had indeed sufficient safety 
and security, by those of his company, which our Captain 
sent unto them, of purpose to comfort them: yet they never 
ceased most earnestly entreating, that our Captain would 
voachsafe to come to them himself for their more safety; 
which when he did, in their presence reporting the charge 
he had first given, and the assurance of his men, they were 

While the guards which we had, not without great need, 
set, as well on the bridge which we had to pass over, as at 
the town's end where we entered (they have no other en- 
trance into the town by land: but from the water's side 
there is one other to carry up and down their merchandise 
from their frigates) gained us liberty and quiet to stay in 


this town some hour and half: we had not only refreshed 
ourselves, but our company and Cimaroons had gotten 
some good pillage, which our Captain allowed and gave 
them (being not the thing he looked for) so that it were 
not too cumbersome or heavy in respect of our travel, or 
defence of ourselves. 

A little before we departed, some ten or twelve horse- 
men came from Panama; by all likelihood, supposing that 
we were gone out of this town, for that all was so still 
and quiet, came to enter the town confidently: but finding 
their entertainment such as it was; they that could, rode 
faster back again for fear than they had ridden forward 
for hope. 

Thus we having ended our business in this town, and the 
day beginning to spring, we marched over the bridge, ob- 
serving the same order that we did before. There we were 
all safe in our opinion, as if we had been environed with 
wall and trench, for that no Spaniard without his extreme 
danger could follow us. The rather now, for that our 
Cimaroons were grown very valiant. But our Captain con- 
sidering that he had a long way to pass, and that he had 
been now well near a fortnight from his ship, where he had 
left his company but weak by reason of their sickness, 
hastened his journeys as much as he might, refusing to visit 
the other Cimaroon towns (which they earnestly desired 
him) and encouraging his own company with such example 
and speech, that the way seemed much shorter. For he 
marched most cheerfully, and assured us that he doubted 
not but ere he left that coast, we should all be bountifully 
paid and recompensed for all those pains taken: but by 
reason of this our Captain's haste, and leaving of their 
towns, we marched many days with hungry stomachs, much 
against the will of our Cimaroons: who if we would have 
stayed any day from this continual journeying, would! 
have killed for us victuals sufficient. 

In our absence, the rest of the Cimaroons had built a little 
town within three leagues oi¥ the port where our ship lay. 
There our Captain was contented, upon their great and ear- 
nest entreaties to make some stay; for that they alleged, it 
was only built for his sake. And indeed he consented the 


rather, that the want of shoes might be supplied by means 
of the Cimaroons, who were a great help unto us: all our 
men complaining of the tenderness of their feet, whom our 
Captain would himself accompany in their complaint, some 
times without cause, but some times with cause indeed; 
which made the rest to bear the burden the more easily. 

These Cimaroons, during all the time that we were with 
burden, did us continually very good service, and in par- 
ticular in this journey, being unto us instead of intelligent 
cers, to advertise us; of guides in our way to direct us; 
of purveyors, to provide victuals for us ; of house-wrights to 
build our lodgings; and had indeed able and strong bodies 
carrying all our necessaries: yea, many times when some 
of our company fainted with sickness of weariness, two 
Cimaroons would carry him with ease between them, two 
miles together, and at other times, when need was, they 
would shew themselves no less valiant than industrious, 
and of good judgment. 

From this town, at our first entrance in the evening, on 
Saturday (22nd February), our Captain despatched a Cim- 
aroon with a token and certain order to the Master: who 
had, these three weeks, kept good watch against the enemy, 
and shifted in the woods for fresh victual, for the relief 
and recovery of our men left aboard. 

As soon as this messenger was come to the shore, calling 
to our ship, as bringing some news, he was quickly fet[ched] 
aboard by those which longed to hear of our Captain's speed- 
ing: but when he showed the toothpike of gold, which he 
said our Captain had sent for a token to Ellis Hixom, 
with charge to meet him at such a river though the Mas- 
ter knew well the Captain's toothpike: yet by reason of 
his admonition and caveat [warning'\ given him at part- 
ing, he (though he bewrayed no sign of distrusting the 
Cimaroon) yet stood as amazed, least something had be- 
fallen our Captain otherwise than well. The Cimaroon 
perceiving this, told him, that it was night when he was 
sent away, so that Qur Captain could not send any letter, 
but yet with the point of his knife, he wrote something 
upon the toothpick, " which," he said, " should be sufficient 
to gain credit to the messenger.'* 


Thereupon, the Master looked upon it, and saw written. 
By me, Francis Drake: wherefore he believed, and ac- 
cording to the message, prepared what provision he could, 
and repaired to the mouth of the river of Tortugos, as the 
Cimaroons that Avent with him then named it. 

That afternoon towards three a clock, we were come down 
to that river, not past half-an-hour before we saw our pin- 
nace ready come to receive us: which was unto us all a 
double rejoicing: first that we saw them, and next, so soon. 
Our Captain with all our company praised GOD most 
heartily, for that we saw our pinnace and fellows again. 

We all seemed to these, who had lived at rest and plenty 
all this while aboard, as men strangely changed (our Cap- 
tain yet not much changed) in countenance and plight: and 
indeed our long fasting and sore travail might somewhat 
forepine and waste us; but the grief we drew inwardly, for 
that we returned without that gold and treasure we hoped 
for did no doubt show her print and footsteps in our faces. 

The rest of our men which were then missed, could not 
travel so well as our Captain, and therefore were left at the 
Indian new town: and the next day (23rd February) we 
rowed to another river in the bottom of the bay and took 
them all aboard. Thus being returned from Panama, to the 
great rejoicing of our company, who were thoroughly re- 
vived with the report we brought from thence : especially 
understanding our Captain's purpose, that he meant not to 
leave off thus, but would once again attempt the same 
journey, whereof they also might be partakers. 

Our Captain would not, in the meantime, suffer this edge 
and forwardness of his men to be dulled or rebated, by lying 
still idly unemployed, as knowing right well by continual 
experience, that no sickness was more noisome to impeach 
any enterprise than delay and idleness. 

Therefore considering deeply the intelligences of other 
places of importance thereabouts, which he had gotten the 
former years ; and particularly of Veragua, a ricn town lying 
to the Westward, between Nombre de Dios and Nicaragua, 
where is the richest mine of fine gold that is on this North 
side ; he consulted with his company touching their opinions. 


what was to be done in this meantime, and how they stood 
affected ? 

Some thought, that " It was most necessary to seek supply 
of victuals, that we might the better be able to keep our men 
close and in health till our time came : and this was easy to 
be compassed, because the frigates with victuals, went with- 
out great defence, whereas the frigate and barks with 
treasure, for the most part were wafted with great ships 
and store of soldiers." 

Others yet judged, " We might better bestow our time in 
intercepting the frigates of treasure; first, for that our 
magazines and storehouses of victuals were reasonably fur- 
nished, and the country itself was so plentiful, that every 
man might provide for himself if the worst befell: and 
victuals might hereafter be provided abundantly as well as 
now: whereas the treasure never floateth upon the sea, so 
ordinarily as at this time of the Fleets being there, which 
time in no wise may be neglected." 

The Cimaroons being demanded also their opinion (for 
that they were experienced in the particularities of all the 
towns thereabouts, as in which some or other of them had 
served), declared that "by Veragua, Signior Pezoro (some 
time their master from whom they fled) dwelt; not in the 
town for fear of some surprise, but yet not far oi¥ from the 
town, for his better relief ; in a very strong house of stone, 
where he had dwelt nineteen years at least, never travelling 
from home; unless happily once a year to Cartagena, or 
Nombre de Dios when the Fleets were there. He keepeth a 
hundred slaves at least in the mines, each slave being bound 
to bring in daily, clear gain (all charges deducted) three Pesos 
of Gold for himself and two for his women (8s. 3d. the Peso), 
amounting in the whole, to above £200 sterling [=f 1,600 
nozv] each day: so that he hath heaped a mighty mass of 
treasure together, which he keepeth in certain great chests, 
of two feet deep, three broad, and four long: being (not 
withstanding all his wealth) bad and cruel not only to his 
slaves, but unto all men, and therefore never going abroad 
but with a guard of five or six men to defend his person 
from danger, which he feareth extraordinarily from all 


" And as touching means of compassing this purpose, they 

ΛνουΜ conduct him safely through the woods, by the same 
ways by which they fled, that he should not need to enter 
their havens with danger, but might come upon their backs 
altogether unlocked for. And though his house were of 
stone, so that it could not be burnt; yet if our Captain would 
undertake the attempt, they would undermine and overthrow, 
or otherwise break it open, in such sort, as we might have 
easy access to his greatest treasure." 

Our Captain having heard all their opinions, concluded so 
that by dividing his company, the two first different sen- 
tences were both reconciled, both to be practised and put 
in use. 

John Oxnam appointed in the Bear, to be sent Eastward 
tow^ards Tolou, to see what store of victuals would come 
athwart his half; and himself would to the Westward in the 
Minioii, lie off and on the Cabezas, where was the greatest 
trade and most ordinary passage of those which transported 
treasure from Veragua and Nicaragua to the Fleet; so that 
no time might be lost, nor opportunity let slip either for vict- 
uals or treasure. As for the attempt of Veragua, or Signior 
Pezoro's house by land, by marching through the woods ; he 
liked not of, lest it might overweary his men by continual 
labour; whom he studied to refresh and strengthen for his 
next service forenamed. 

Therefore using our Cimaroons most courteously, dismiss- 
ing those that were desirous to their wives, with such gifts 
and favours as were most pleasing, and entertaining those 
still aboard his ship, which were contented to abide with the 
company remaining; the pinnaces departed as we deter- 
mined : the Minion to the West, the Bear to tTie East. 

The Minion about the Cabegas, met with a frigate of 
Nicaragua, in which was some gold, and a Genoese Pilot (of 
which Nation there are many in those coasts), which had 
been at Veragua not past eight days before. He being very 
:λ^^1 entreated, certified our Captain of the state of the town, 
and of the harbour, and of a frigate that was there ready 
to come forth within few days, aboard which there was above 
a million of gold, oft'ering to conduct him to it, if we would 
do him his right: for that he knew the channel very 


perfectly, so that he could enter by night safely without 
danger of the sands and shallows,, though there be but little 
water, and utterly undescried; for that the town is five 
leagues within the harbour, and the way by land is so far 
about and difficult through the woods, that though we should 
by any casualty be discovered, about the point of the har- 
bour, yet we might despatch our business and depart, before 
the town could have notice of our coming. 

At his being there, he perceived they had heard of Drake's 
being on the coast, which had put them in great fear, as in 
all other places (Pezoro purposing to remove himself to the 
South Sea!) : but there was nothing done to prevent him, 
their fear being so great, that, as it is accustomed in such 
cases, it excluded counsel and bred despair. 

Our Captain, conferring with his own knowledge and 
former intelligences, was purposed to have returned to his 
ship, to have taken some of those Cimaroons which had 
dwelt with Signior Pezoro, to be the more confirmed in this 

But when the Genoese Pilot was very earnest, to have the 
time gained, and warranted our Captain of good speed, if we 
delayed not; he dismissed the frigate, somewhat lighter to 
hasten her journey ! and with this Pilot's advice, laboured 
with sail and oars to get this harbour and to enter it by 
night accordingly: considering that this frigate might now 
be gained, and Pezoro's house attempted hereafter notwith- 

But when we were come to the mouth of the harbour, we 
heard the report of two Chambers, and farther off about a 
league within the bay, two other as it were answering them : 
whereby the Genoese Pilot conjectured that we were dis- 
covered: for he assured us, that this order had been taken 
since his last being there, by reason of the advertisement 
and charge, which the Governor of Panama had sent to all 
the Coasts; which even in their beds lay in great and con- 
tinual fear of our Captain, and therefore by all likelihood, 
maintained 'this kind of watch, at the charge of the rich 
GnufTe Pezoro for their security. 

Thus being defeated of this expectation, we found it was 
not GOD'S will that we should enter at that time : the rather 


for that the wind, which had all this time been Easterly, 
came up to the Westward, and invited us to return again ίο 
our ship; where, on Sheere Thursday (19th March), we met, 
according to appointment, with our Bear, and found that 
she had bestowed her time to more profit than we had done. 

For she had taken a frigate in which there were ten men 
(whom they set ashore) great store of maize, twenty-eight 
fat hogs, and two hundred hens. Our Captain discharged 
(20th March) this frigate of her lading; and because she 
was new, strong, and of a good mould, the next day (21st 
March) he tallowed her to make her a Man-of-war: dispos- 
ing all our ordnance and provisions that were fit for such 
use, in her. For we had heard by the Spaniards last taken, 
that there were two little galleys built in Nombre de Dios, to 
waft the Chagres Fleet to and fro, but were not yet both 
launched: wherefore he purposed now to adventure for that 

And to hearten his company he feasted them that Easter- 
Day (22nd March) with great cheer and cheerfulness, set- 
ting up his rest upon that attempt. 

The next day (23rd March) with the new tallowed frigate 
of Tolou [«of of 20 tons, p. 203; one of the two frigates in 
which the Expedition returned to England'], and his Bear, 
we set sail towards the Cativaas, where about two days after 
we landed, and stayed till noon ; at what time seeing a sail 
to the westward, as we deemed making to the island: we 
set sail and plied towards him, who descrying us, bare with 
us, till he perceived by our confidence, that we were no 
Spaniards, and conjectured we were those Englishmen, of 
whom he had heard long before. And being in great want, 
and desirous to be relieved by us: he bare up under our 
lee, and in token of amity, shot off his lee ordnance, which 
was not unanswered. 

We understood that he was ΤΕτθ, a French Captain of 
Newhaven [Havre] a Man-of-war as we were, desirous to 
be relieved by us. For at our first meeting, the French Cap- 
tain cast abroad his hands, and prayed our Captain to help 
him to some water, for that he had nothing but wine and 
cider aboard him, which had brought his men into great 
sickness. He had sought us ever since he first heard of fiUC 


bein^ upon the coast, about this five weeks. Our Captain 
sent one aboard him with some relief for the present, willing 
him to follow us to the next port, where he should have both 
water and victuals. 

At our coming to anchor, he sent our Captain a case of 
pistols, and a fair gilt scimitar (which had been the late 
King's of France [Henry II.], whom Monsieur Montgomery 
hurt in the eye, and was given him by Monsieur Strozze). 
Our Captain requited him with a chain of gold, and a tablet 
which he wore. 

This Captain reported unto us the first news of the 
Massacre of Paris, at the King of Navarre's marriage on 
Saint Bartholomew's Day last, [24 August, 1572] ; of the 
Admiral of France slain in his chamber, and divers other 
murders : so that he " thought those Frenchmen the happiest 
which were farthest from France, now no longer France 
but Frensy, even as if all Gaul were turned into worm- 
wood and gall : Italian practices having over-mastered the 
French simplicity." He showed what famous and often 
reports he had heard of our great riches. He desired to 
know of our Captain which way he might " compass " his 
voyage also. 

Though we had seen him in some jealousy and distrust, 
for all his pretence ; because we considered more the strength 
he had than the good-will he might bear us : yet upon con- 
sultation among ourselves, " Whether it were fit to receive 
him or not ? " we resolved to take him and twenty of his 
men, to serve with our Captain for halves. In such sort as 
we needed not doubt of their forces, being but twenty; nor 
be hurt by their portions, being no greater than ours : and 
yet gratify them in their earnest suit, and serve our own 
purpose, which without more help we could very hardly 
have achieved. Indeed, he had 70 men, and we now but 31 ; 
his ship was above 80 tons, and our frigate not 20, or pinnace 
nothing near 10 tons. Yet our Captain thought this pro- 
portionable, in consideration that not numbers of men, but 
quality of their judgements and knowledge, were to be the 
principal actors herein : and the French ship could do no 
service, nor stand in any stead to this enterprise which we 
intended, and had agreed upon before, both touching the 

Hc— Vol. 33 iT) 


time when it should take beginning, and the place where we 
should meet, namely, at Rio Francisco. 

Having thus agreed with Captain TetO, we sent for the 
Cimaroons as before was decreed. Two of them were 
brought aboard our ships, to give the French assurance of 
this agreement. 

And as soon as we could furnish ourselves and refresh 
the French company, which was within five or six days 
(by bringing them to the magazines which were the nearest, 
where they were supplied by us in such sort, as they pro- 
tested they were beholding to us for all their lives) taking 
twenty of the French and fifteen of ours with our Cimaroons, 
leaving both our ships in safe road, we manned our frigate 
and two pinnaces (we had formerly sunk our Lion, shortly 
after our return from Panama, because we had not men suf- 
ficient to man her), and went towards Rio Francisco: which 
because it had not water enough for our frigate, caused us 
to leave her at the Cabeqas, manned with English and 
French, in the charge of Robert Doble, to stay there without 
attempting any chase, until the return of our pinnaces. 

And then bore to Rio Francisco, where both Captains 
landed (31st March) with such force as aforesaid [i.e., 20 
French, 15 English, and the Cimaroons], and charged them 
that had the charge of the pinnaces to be there the fourth 
day next following Avithout any fail. And thus knowing 
that the carriages [mule loads] went now daily from Pan- 
ama to Nombre de Dios; we proceeded in covert through 
the woods, towards the highway that leadeth between them. 

It is five leagues accounted by sea, between Rio Francisco 
and Nombre de Dios ; but that way which we march by land, 
we found it above seven leagues. We marched as in our 
former journey to Panama, both for order and silence ; to 
the great wonder of the French Captain and company, who 
protested they knew not by any means how to recover the 
pinnaces, if the Cimaroons (to whom what our Captain 
commanded was a law; though they little regarded the 
French, as having no trust in them) should leave us : our 
Captain assured him, " There was no cause oi doubt of 
them, of whom he had had such former trial." 


When we were come within an English mile of the way, 
we stayed all night, refreshing ourselves, in great stillness, 
in a most convenient place : where we heard the carpenters, 
being many in number, working upon their ships, as they 
usually do by reason of the great heat of the day in Nombre 
de Dios; and might hear the mules coming from Panama, 
by reason of the advantage of the ground. 

The next morning (ist April), upon hearing of that num- 
ber of bells, the Cimaroons, rejoiced exceedingly, as though 
there could not have befallen them a more joyful accident 
chiefly having been disappointed before. Now they all as- 
sured us, " We should have more gold and silver than all of 
us could bear away " : as in truth it fell out. 

For there came three Recuas, one of 50 mules, the other 
two, of 70 each, every [one] of which carried 300 lbs. weight 
of silver; which in all amounted to near thirty tons [i.e., 190 
mules, with 300 lbs. each=abotit 57,000 lbs. of silverl. 

We putting ourselves in readiness, went down near the 
way to hear the bells ; where we stayed not long, but we saw 
of what metal they were made ; and took such hold on the 
heads of the foremost and hindmost mules, that all the rest 
stayed and lay down, as their manner is. 

These three Recuas were guarded with forty-five soldiers 
or thereabouts, fifteen to each Recua, which caused some ex- 
change of bullets and arrows for a time; in which conflict 
the French Captain was sore wounded with hail-shot in the 
belly, and one Cimaroon was slain: but in the end, these 
soldiers thought it the best way to leave their mules with us, 
and to seek for more help abroad. 

In which meantime we took some pain to ease some of the 
mules which were heaviest loaden of their carriage. And 
because we ourselves were somewhat weary, we were con- 
tented with a few bars and quoits of gold, as we could well 
carry: burying about fifteen tons of silver, partly in the 
burrows which the great land crabs had made in the earth, 
and partly under old trees which were fallen thereabout, and 
partly in the sand and gravel of a river, not very deep of 

Thus when about this business, we had spent some two 
hours, and had disposed of all our matters, and were ready 


to march back the very self-same way that we came, we 
heard both horse and foot coming as it seemed to the mules : 
for they never followed us, after we were once entered the 
woods, where the French Captain by reason of his wound, 
not able to travel farther, stayed, in hope that some rest 
would recover him better strength. 

But after we had marched some two leagues, upon the 
French soldiers' complaint, that they missed one of their ι 
men also, examination being made whether he were slain or 
not: it was found that he had drunk much wine, and over- 
lading himself with pillage, and hasting to go before us, had 
lost himself in the woods. And as we afterwards knew, he 
was taken by the Spaniards that evening; and upon torture, 
discovered unto them where we had hidden our treasure. 

We continued our march all that and the next day (2nd 
and 3rd April) towards Rio Francisco, in hope to meet with 
our pinnaces ; but when we came thither, looking out to sea, 
we saw seven Spanish pinnaces, which had been searching 
all the coast thereabouts : whereupon we mightily suspected 
that they had taken or spoiled our pinnaces, for that our 
Captain had given so straight charge, that they should re- 
pair to this place this afternoon; from the Cabeqas where 
they rode ; whence to our sight these Spaniards' pinnaces did 

But the night before, there had fallen very much rain, with 
much westerly wind, which as it enforced the Spaniards to 
return home the sooner, by reason of the storm: so it kept 
our pinnaces, that they could not keep the appointment; 
because the wind was contrary, and blew so strong, that with 
their oars they could all that day get but half the way. 
Notwithstanding, if they had followed our Captain's direc- 
tion in setting forth over night, while the wind served, they 
had arrived at the place appointed with far less labour, but 
with far more danger: because that very day at noon, the 
shallops manned out, of purpose, from Nombre de Dios, were 
come to this place to take our pinnaces : imagining where we 
were, after they had heard of our intercepting of the 

Our Captain seeing the shallops, feared least having taken 
our pinnaces, they had compelled our men by torture to 


confess where his frigate and ships were. Therefore in this 
distress and perplexity, the company misdoubting that all 
means of return to their country were cut off, and that their 
treasure then served them to small purpose; our Captain 
comforted and encouraged us all, saying, " We should ven- 
ture no farther than he did. It was no time now to fear: 
but rather to haste [n] to prevent that which was feared! 
If the enemy have prevailed against our pinnaces, which 
GOD forbid ! yet they must have time to search them, time 
to examine the mariners, time to execute their resolution 
after it is determined. Before all these times be taken, we 
may get to our ships, if ye will ! though not possibly by land, 
because of the hills, thickets, and rivers, yet by water. Let 
us, therefore, make a raft with the trees that are here in 
readiness, as offering themselves, being brought down the 
river, happily this last storm, and put ourselves to sea! I 
will be one, who will be the other? " 

John Smith offered himself, and two Frenchmen that 
could swim very well, desired they might accompany our 
Captain, as did the Cimaroons likewise (who had been very 
earnest with our Captain to have marched by land, though 
it were sixteen days' journey, and in case the ship had been 
surprised, to have abode always with them), especially 
Pedro, who yet was fain to be left behind, because he could 
not row. 

The raft was fitted and fast bound; a sail of a biscuit 
sack prepared; an oar was shaped out of a young tree to 
serve instead of a rudder, to direct their course before the 

At his departure he comforted the company, by promising, 
that " If it pleased GOD, he should put his foot in safety 
aboard his frigate, he would, GOD willing, by one means or 
other get them all aboard, in despite of all the Spaniards in 
the Indies ! " 

In this manner pulling off to the sea, he sailed some three 
leagues, sitting up to the waist continually in water, and at 
every surge of the wave to the arm-pits, for the space of six 
hours, upon this raft : what with the parching of the sun and 
what with the beating of the salt water, they had all of them 
their skins much fretted away. 


At length GOD gave them the sight of two pinnaces 
turning towards them with much wind ; but with far greater 
joy to him than could easily conjecture, and did cheerfully 
declare to those three with him, that " they were our pin- 
naces ! and that all was safe, so that there was no cause of 
fear ! " 

But see, the pinnaces not seeing this raft, nor suspecting 
any such matter, by reason of the wind and night growing 
on, were forced to run into a cove behind the point, to take 
succour, for that night: which our Captain seeing, and 
gathering (because they came not forth again), that they 
would anchor there, put his raft ashore, and ran by land 
about the point, where he found them; who, upon sight of 
him, made as much haste as they could to take him and his 
company aboard. For our Captain (of purpose to try what 
haste they could and would make in extremity), himself ran 
in great haste, and so willed the other three with him; as if 
they had been chased by the enemy: which they the rather 
suspected, because they saw so few with him. 

And after his coming aboard, when they demanding 
" How all his company did ? " he answered coldly, " Well ! " 
They all doubted [feared] that all went scarce well. But he 
willing to rid all doubts, and fill them with joy, took out of 
his bosom a quoit of gold, thanking GOD that " our voyage 
was made ! " 

And to the Frenchmen he declared, how their Captain 
indeed was left behind, sore wounded and two of his com- 
pany with him: but it should be no hindrance to them. 

That night (4th April) our Captain with great pain of his 
company, rowed to Rio Francisco: where he took the rest 
in, and the treasure which we had brought with us : making 
such expedition, that by dawning of the day, we set sail back 
again to our frigate, and from thence directly to our ships: 
where, as soon as we arrived, our Captain divided by weight, 
the gold and silver into two even portions, between the 
French and the English. 

About a fortnight after, when we had set all things in 
order, and taking out of our ship [the Pascha] all such 
necessaries as we needed for our frigate, had left and given 


her to the Spaniards, whom we had all this time detained, we 
put out of that harbour [at Fort Diego, p. i6o] together with 
the French ship, riding some few days among the Cabeqas. 

In the meantime, our Captain made a secret composition 
with the Cimaroons, that twelve of our men and sixteen of 
theirs, should make another voyage, to get intelligence in 
what case the country stood; and if it might be, recover 
Monsieur Tetu, the French Captain; at leastwise to bring 
away that which was hidden in our former surprise, and 
could not then be conveniently carried. 

John Oxnam and Thomas Sherwell were put in trust 
for his service, to the great content of the whole company, 
who conceived greatest hope of them next our Captain; 
whom by no means they would condescend to suffer to 
adventure again, this time : yet he himself rowed to set them 
ashore at Rio Francisco; finding his labour well employed 
both otherwise, and also in saving one of those two French- 
men that had remained willingly to accompany their wounded 

For this gentleman, having escaped the rage of the Span- 
iards, was now coming towards our pinnace, where he fell 
down on his knees, blessing GOD for the time, " that ever 
our Captain was born; who now, beyond all his hopes, was 
become his deliverer." 

He being demanded, " What was become of his Captain 
and other fellow?" shewed that within half an hour after 
our departure, the Spaniards had overgotten them, and took 
liis Captain and other fellow: he only escaped by flight, hav- 
ing cast away all his carriage, and among the rest one box of 
jewels, that he might fly the swifter from the pursuers: but 
his fellow took it up and burdened himself so sore, that he 
could make no speed; as easily as he might otherwise, if he 
would have cast down his pillage, and laid aside his covetous 
mind. As for the silver, which we had hidden thereabout in 
the earth and the sands, he thought that it was all gone : for 
that he thought there had been near two thousand Spaniards 
and Negroes there to dig and cearch for it. 

This report notwithstanding, our purpose held, and our 
men were sent to the said place, where they found that the 
earth, every way a mile distant had been digged and turned 


up in every place of any likelihood, to have anything hidden 
in it. 

And yet nevertheless, for all that narrow search, all our 
men's labour was not quite lost, but so considered, that the 
third day after their departure, they all returned safe and 
cheerful, with as much silver as they and all the Cimaroons 
could find (vL•.^ thirteen bars of silver, and some few quoits 
of gold), with which they were presently embarked, without 
empeachment, repairing with no less speed than joy to our 

Now was it high time to think of homewards, having sped 
ourselves as we desired : and therefore our Captain concluded 
to visit Rio Grande [Magdelena] once again, to see if he 
could meet with any sufficient ship or bark, to carry victuals 
enough to serve our turn homewards, in which we might in 
safety and security embark ourselves. 

The Frenchmen having formerly gone from us, as soon as 
they had their shares, at our first return with the treasure; 
as being very desirous to return home into their country, 
and our Captain as desirous to dismiss them, as they were to 
be dismissed: for that he foresaw they could not in their ship 
avoid the danger of being taken by the Spaniards, if they 
should make out any Men-of-war for them, while they 
lingered on the coast; and having also been then again re- 
lieved with victuals by us. — Now at our meeting of them 
again, were very loath to leave us, and therefore accom- 
panied us very kindly as far up as St. Bernards ; and farther 
would, but that they durst not adventure so great danger; 
for that Λνε had intelligence, that the Fleet was ready to set 
sail for Spain, riding at the entry of Cartagena. 

Thus we departed from them, passing hard by Cartagena, 
in the sight of all the Fleet, with a flag of St. George in 
the main top of our frigate, with silk streamers and ancients 
down to the water, sailing forward with a large wind, till we 
came within two leagues of the river [Magdalenal, being all 
low land, and dark night : where to prevent the over shooting 
of the river in the night, we lay off and on bearing small 
sail, till that about midnight the wind veering to the east- 
ward, by two of the clock in the morning, a frigate from 


Rio Grande [Magdalena] passed hard by us, bearing also 
but small sail. We saluted them with our shot and arrows, 
they answered us with bases; but we got aboard them, and 
took such order, that they were content against their wills 
to depart ashore and to leave us this frigate: which was of 
25 tons, loaded with maize, hens, and hogs, and some honey, 
in very good time fit for our use; for the honey especially 
was notable reliever and preserver of our crazed [sick] 

The next morning as soon as we set those Spaniards 
ashore on the Main, we set our course for the Cabegas with- 
out any stop, whither we came about five days after. And 
being at anchor, presently we hove out all the maize a land, 
saving three butts which we kept for our store : and carry- 
ing all our provisions ashore, we brought both our frigates 
on the careen, and new tallowed them. 

Here we stayed about seven nights, trimming and rigging 
our frigates, boarding and stowing our provisions, tearing 
abroad and burning our pinnaces, that the Cimaroons might 
have the iron-work. 

About a day or two before our departure, our Captain 
willed Pedro and three of the chiefest of the Cimaroons to 
go through both his frigates, to see what they liked; prom- 
ising to give it them, whatsoever it were, so it were not so 
necessary as that he could not return into England without 
it. And for their wives he would himself seek out some 
silks or linen that might gratify them; which while he was 
choosing out of his trunks, the scimitar which Captain 
Tetu had given to our Captain, chanced to be taken forth 
in Pedro's sight: which he seeing grew so much in liking 
thereof, that he accounted of nothing else in respect of it, 
and preferred it before all that could be given him. Yet 
imagining that it was no less esteemed of our Captain, 
durst not himself open his mouth to crave or commend it; 
but made one Francis Tucker to be his mean to break his 
mind, promising to give him a fine quoit of gold, which yet 
he had in store, if he would but move our Captain for it; 
and to our Captain himself, he would give four other great 
quoits which he had hidden, intending to have reserved 
them until another voyage. 


Our Captain being accordingly moved by Francis Tucker, 
could have been content to have made no such exchange; 
but yet desirous to content him, that had deserved so well, 
he gave it him with many good words: who received it with 
no little joy, affirming that if he should give his wife and 
children which he loved dearly in lieu of it, he could not 
sufficient recompense it (for he would present his king with 
it, who he knew would make him a great man, even for this 
very gift's sake) ; yet in gratuity and stead of other re- 
quital of this jewel, he desired our Captain to accept these 
four pieces of gold, as a token of his thankfulness to him, 
and a pawn of his faithfulness during life. 

Our Captain received it in most kind sort, but took it not 
to his own benefit, but caused it to be cast into the whole 
Adventure, saying, " If he had not been set forth to that 
place, he had not attained such a commodity, and therefore 
it was just that they which bare part with him of his burden 
in setting him to sea, should enjoy the proportion of his 
benefit whatsoever at his return." 

Thus with good love and liking we took our leave of that 
people, setting over to the islands of [ ? ], whence 

the next day after, w^e set sail towards Cape St. Antonio; by 
which we past with a large wind: but presently being to 
stand for the Havana, we were fain to ply to the windward 
some three or four days; in which plying we fortuned to 
take a small bark, in which were two or three hundred hides, 
and one most necessary thing, which stood us in great stead, 
viz., a pump ! \vhich we set in our frigate. Their bark 
because it was nothing fit for our service, our Captain gave 
them to carry them home. 

And so returning to Cape St. Antonio, and landing there, 
we refreshed ourselves, and beside great store of turtle 
eggs, found by day in the [sand], we took 250 turtles by 
night. We powdered [salted] and dried some of them, 
which did us good service. The rest continued but a small 

There were, at this time, belonging to Cartagena, Nombre 
de Dios, Rio Grande, Santa Marta, Rio de la Hacha, Venta 
Cruz, Veragua, Nicaragua, the Honduras, Jamaica &c,, 
above 200 frigates; some of a 120 tons, others but of 10 or 


12 tons, but the most of 30 or 40 tons, which all had inter- 
course between Cartagena and Nombre de Dios. The most 
of which, during our abode in those parts, we took ; and 
some of them, twice or thrice each : yet never burnt nor 
sunk any, unless they were made out Men-of-war against 
us, or laid as stales to entrap us. 

And of all the men taken in these several vessels, we never 
offered any kind of violence to any, after they were once 
come under our power ; but either presently dismissed them in 
safety, or keeping them with us some longer time (as some 
of them we did), we always provided for their sustenance 
as for ourselves, and secured them from the rage of the 
Cimaroons against them: till at last, the danger of their 
discovering where our ships lay being over past, for which 
only cause we kept them prisoners, we set them also free. 

Many strange birds, beasts, and fishes, besides fruits, 
trees, plants, and the like, were seen and observed of us 
in this journey, which willingly we pretermit as hastening 
to the end of our voyage : which from this Cape of St. 
Antonio, we intended to finish by sailing the directest and 
speediest way homeward; and accordingly, even beyond our 
own expectation, most happily performed. 

For whereas our Captain had purposed to touch at New- 
foundland, and there to have watered; which would have 
been some let unto us, though we stood in great want of 
water; yet GOD Almighty so provided for us, by giving 
us good store of rain water, that we were sufficiently fur- 
nished: and, within twenty-three days, we passed from the 
Cape of Florida, to the Isles of Scilly, and so arrived at 
Plymouth, on Sunday, about sermon time, August the 
9th, 1573. 

At what time, the news of our Captain's return brought 
unto his, did so speedily pass over all the church, and sur- 
pass their minds with desire and delight to see him, that 
very few or none remained with the Preacher. All hastened 
to see the evidence of GOD's love and blessing towards our 
Gracious Queen and country, by the fruit of our Captain's 
labour and success. 

Soli DEO Gloria. 






Narrative by Francis Pretty, 
ONE OF Drake's gentlemen at arms. 

The Famous Voyage of Sir FRANCIS DRAKE into the South Sea, 
and therehence about the -juhole Globe of the Earth, begun in the 
year of our Lord 1577. 

THE 15. day of November, in the year of our Lord 
1577, Master Francis Drake, with a fleet of five 
ships and barks,^ and to the number of 164 men, 
gentlemen and sailors, departed from Plymouth, giving out 
his pretended voyage for Alexandria. But the wind falling 
contrary, he was forced the next morning to put into 
Falmouth Haven, in Cornwall, \vhere such and so terrible 
a tempest took us, as few men have seen the like, and was 
indeed so vehement that all our ships were like to have gone 
to wrack. But it pleased God to preserve us from that ex- 
tremity, and to afflict us only for that present with these 
two particulars: the mast of our Admiral, which was the 
Pelican, was cut overboard for the safeguard of the ship, 
and the Marigold was driven ashore, and somewhat bruised. 
For the repairing of which damages we returned again to 
Plymouth; and having recovered those harms, and brought 
the ships again to good state, we set forth the second time 
from Plymouth, and set sail the 13. day of December 
The 25. day of the same month we fell with the Cape 

^ The Pelican, 120 tons, commanded by Drake; the Elisabeth, a new 
Deptford-built ship of 80 tons, commanded by Winter, with her pinnace the 
Benedict; the Marigold, of 30 tons; and the Swan, a fly-boat of 50 tons. 



Cantin, upon the coast of Barhary; and coasting along, the 
2"/. day we found an island called Mogador, lying one mile 
distant from the main. Between which island and the 
main we found a very good and safe harbour for our ships 
to ride in, as also very good entrance, and void of any danger. 
On this island our General erected a pinnace, whereof he 
brought out of England with him four already framed. 
While these things were in doing, there came to the water's 
side some of the inhabitants of the country, shewing forth 
their flags of truce ; which being seen of our General, he 
sent his ship's boat to the shore to know what they would. 
They being willing to come aboard, our men left there one 
man of our company for a pledge, and brought two of theirs 
aboard our ship ; which by signs shewed our General that the 
next day they would bring some provision, as sheep, capons, 
and hens, and such like. Whereupon our General bestowed 
amongst them some linen cloth and shoes, and a javelin, 
which they very joyfully received, and departed for that 
time. The next morning they failed not to come again to 
the water's side. And our General again setting out our 
boat, one of our men leaping over-rashly ashore, and ofifer- 
ing friendly to embrace them, they set violent hands on him, 
offering a dagger to his throat if he had made any resistance; 
and so laying him on a horse carried him away. So that a man 
cannot be too circumspect and wary of himself among such 
miscreants. Our pinnace being finished, we departed from 
this place the 30. and last day of December, and coasting 
along the shore we did descry, not contrary to our expecta- 
tion, certain canters, which were Spanish fishermen;" to 
whom we gave chase and took three of them. And proceed- 
ing further we met with three carvels, and took them also. 

The 17. day of January we arrived at Cape Blanco, where 
we found a ship riding at anchor, within the Cape, and 
but two simple mariners in her. Which ship we took and 
carried her further into the harbour, where we remained 
four days; and in that space our General mustered and 
trained his men on land in warlike manner, to make them 
fit for all occasions. In this place we took of the fishermen 
such necessaries as we wanted, and they could yield us; 

2 Old Sp. camera (perhaps from cantharus'). 


and leaving here one of our little barks, called the Benedict, 
we took with us one of theirs which they called canters, 
being of the burden of 40 tons or thereabouts. All these 
things being finished we departed this harbour the 22. of 
January, carrying along with us one of the Portugal carvels, 
which was bound to the islands of Cape Verde for salt, 
whereof good store is made in one of those islands. The 
master or pilot of that carvel did advertise our General 
that upon one of those islands, called Mayo, there was 
great store of dried cabritos* which a few inhabitants there 
dwelling did yearly make ready for such of the king''s ships 
as did there touch, being bound for his country of Brazil 
or elsewhere. We fell with this island the 27. of January, 
but the inhabitants would in no case traffic with us, being 
thereof forbidden by the king's edict. Yet the next day 
our General sent to view the island, and the likelihoods that 
might be there of provision of victuals, about threescore and 
two men under the conduct and government of Master 
Winter and Master Doughty. And marching towards the 
chief place of habitation in this island (as by the Portugal 
we were informed), having travelled to the mountains the 
space of three miles, and arriving there somewhat before 
the daybreak, we arrested ourselves, to see day before us. 
Which appearing, we found the inhabitants to be fled; but 
the place, by reason that it was manured, we found to be 
more fruitful than the other part, especially the valleys 
among the hills. 

Here we gave ourselves a little refreshing, as by very ripe 
and sweet grapes, which the fruitfulness of the earth at 
that season of the year yielded us ; and that season being 
with us the depth of winter, it may seem strange that those 
fruits were then there growing. But the reason thereof is 
this, because they being between the tropic and the equi- 
noctial, the sun passeth twice in the year through their 
zenith over their heads, by means whereof they have two 
summers ; and being so near the heat of the line they never 
lose the heat of the sun so much, but the fruits have their 
increase and continuance in the midst of Avinter. The island 
is wonderfully stored with goats and wild hens; and it hath 

* Goats. 


salt also, without labour, save only that the people gather it 
into heaps; which continually in greater quantity is in- 
creased upon the sands by the flowing of the sea, and the 
receiving heat of the sun kerning the same. So that of the 
increase thereof they keep a continual traffic with their 

Amongst other things we found here a kind of fruit 
called cocos, which because it is not commonly known with 
us in England, I thought good to make some description of 
it. The tree beareth no leaves nor branches, but at the very 
top the fruit groweth in clusters, hard at the top of the stem 
of the tree, as big every several fruit as a man's head ; but 
having taken off the uttermost bark, which you shall find to 
be very full of strings or sinews, as I may term them, you 
shall come to a hard shell, which may hold in quantity of 
liquor a pint commonly, or some a quart, and some less. 
Within that shell, of the thickness of half-an-inch good, you 
shall have a kind of hard substance and very white, no less 
good and sweet than almonds; within that again, a certain 
clear liquor, which being drunk, you shall not only find it 
very delicate and sweet, but most comfortable and cordial. 

After we had satisfied ourselves with some of these fruits, 
we marched further into the island, and saw great store of 
cabritos alive, which were so chased by the inhabitants that 
we could do no good towards our provision; but they had 
laid out, as it were to stop our mouths withal, certain old 
dried cabritos, which being but ill, and small and few, we 
made no account of. Being returned to our ships, our 
General departed hence the 31. of this month, and sailed by 
the island of Santiago, but far enough from the danger of 
the inhabitants, who shot and discharged at us three pieces; 
but they all fell short of us, and did us no harm. The 
island is fair and large, and, as if seemeth, rich and fruitful, 
and inhabited by the Portugals; but the mountains and high 
places of the island are said to be possessed by the Moors, 
who having been slaves to the Portugals, to ease themselves, 
made escape to the desert places of the island, where they 
abide with great strength. Being before this island, we 
espied two ships under sail, to the one of which we gave 
chase, and in the end boarded her with a ship-boat without 


Resistance; which we found to be a good prize, and she 
yielded unto us good store of wine. Which prize our 
General committed to the custody of Master Doughty; and 
retaining the pilot, sent the rest away with his pinnace, giv- 
ing them a butt of wine and some victuals, and their wearing 
clothes, and so they departed. The same night we came with 
the island called by the Portugals Ilha do Fogo, that is, the 
burning island ; in the north side whereof is a consuming fire. 
The matter is said to be of sulphur, but, notwithstanding, it 
is like to be a commodious island, because the Portugals 
have built, and do inhabit there. Upon the south side there- 
of lieth a most pleasant and sweet island, the trees whereof 
are always green and fair to look upon; in respect whereof 
they call it Ilha Brava, that is, the brave island. From 
the banks thereof into the sea do run in many places reason- 
able streams of fresh water easy to come by, but there was 
no convenient road for our ships ; for such was the depth 
that no ground could be had for anchoring. And it is 
reported that ground was never found in that place; so 
that the tops of Fogo burn not so high in the air, but the 
roots of Brava are quenched as low in the sea. 

Being departed from these islands, we drew towards 
the line, where we were becalmed the space of three weeks, 
but yet subject to divers great storms, terrible lightnings and 
much thunder. But with this misery we had the commodity 
of great store of fish, as dolphins, honitos, and flying-fishes, 
whereof some fell into our ships; wherehence they could 
not rise again for want of moisture, for when their wings are 
dry they cannot fly. 

From the first day of our departure from the islands 
of Cape Verde, we sailed 54 days without sight of land. 
And the first land that we fell with was the coast of Brazil, 
which we saw the fifth of April, in the height of 33 degrees 
towards the pole Antarctic. And being discovered at sea 
by the inhabitants of the country, they made upon the coast 
great fires for a sacrifice (as we learned) to the devils; 
about which they use conjurations, making heaps of sand, and 
other ceremonies, that when any ship shall go about to stay 
upon their coast, not only sands may be gathered together in 
shoals in every place, but also that storms and tempests may 


arise, to the casting away of ships and men, whereof, as it 
is reported, there have been divers experiments. 

The 7. day in a mighty great storm, both of lightning, 
rain, and thunder, we lost the canter, which we called 
the Christopher. But the eleventh day after, by our General's 
great care in dispersing his ships, we found her again; and 
the place where we met our General called the Cape of Joy, 
where every ship took in some water. Here we found a 
good temperature and sweet air, a very fair and pleasant 
country with an exceeding fruitful soil, where were great 
store of large and mighty deer, but we came not to the sight 
of any people; but travelling further into the country we 
perceived the footing of people in the clay ground, shewing 
that they were men of great stature. Being returned to our 
ships we weighed anchor, and ran somewhat further, and 
harboured ourselves between the rock and the main ; where 
by means of the rock that brake the force of the sea, we rid 
very safe. And upon this rock we killed for our provision 
certain sea-wolves, commonly called with us seals. From 
hence we went our course to 36 degrees, and entered the 
great river of Plate, and ran into 54 and 53 1-2 fathoms of 
fresh water, where we filled our water by the ship's side; 
but our General finding here no good harborough, as he 
thought he should, bare out again to sea the 27. of April, 
and in bearing out we lost sight of our fly-boat wherein 
Master Doughty was. But we, sailing along, found a fair 
and reasonable good bay, wherein were many and the same 
profitable islands; one whereof had so many seals as would 
at the least have laden all our ships, and the rest of the 
islands are, as it were, laden with fowls, which is wonderful 
to see, and they of divers sorts. It is a place very plentiful 
of victuals, and hath in it no want of fresh water. Our 
General, after certain days of his abode in this place, being 
on shore in an island, the people of the country shewed 
themselves unto him, leaping and dancing, and entered into 
traffic with him; but they Avould not receive anything at 
any man's hands, but the same must be cast upon the ground. 
They are of clean, comely, and strong bodies, swift on foot, 
and seem to be very active. 

The 18. day of May, our General thought it needful to 


have a care of such ships as were absent; and therefore 
endeavouring to seek the fly-boat wherein Master Doughty 
was, we espied her again the next day. And whereas certain 
of our ships were sent to discover the coast and to search an 
harbour, the Marigold and the canter being employed in that 
business, came unto us and gave us understanding of a safe 
harbour that they had found. Wherewith all our ships 
bare, and entered it; where we watered and made new 
provision of victuals, as by seals, whereof we slew to the 
number of 200 or 300 in the space of an hour. Here our 
General in the Admiral rid close aboard the fly-boat, and 
took out of her all the provision of victuals and what else 
was in her, and hauling her to the land, set fire to her, and so 
burnt her to save the iron work. Which being a-doing, there 
came down of the country certain of the people naked, sav- 
ing only about their waist the skin of some beast, with the 
fur or hair on, and something also wreathed on their heads. 
Their faces were painted with divers colours, and some of 
them had on their heads the similitude of horns, every man 
his bow, which was an ell in length, and a couple of arrows. 
They were very agile people and quick to deliver, and 
seemed not to be ignorant in the feats of wars, as by their 
order of ranging a few men might appear. These people 
would not of a long time receive anything at our hands; 
yet at length our General being ashore, and they dancing 
after their accustomed manner about him, and he once 
turning his back towards them, one leaped suddenly to him, 
and took his cap with his gold band off his head, and ran a 
little distance from him, and shared it with his fellow, the 
cap to the one, and the band to the other. Having despatched 
all our business in this place, we departed and set sail. And 
immediately upon our setting forth we lost our canter, which 
was absent three of four days ; but when our General had 
her again, he took out the necessaries, and so gave her over, 
near to the Cape of Good Hope. The next day after, being 
the 20. of June, we harboured ourselves again in a very good 
harborough, called by Magellan, Port St. Julian, where we 
found a gibbet standing upon the main ; which we supposed 
to be the place where Magellan did execution upon some of 
his disobedient and rebellious company. 


The two and twentieth day our General went ashore to the 
main, and in his company John Thomas, and Robert 
Winterhie, Oliver the master-gunner, John Brewer, Thomas 
Hood, and Thomas Drake. And entering on land, they 
presently met with two or three of the country people. And 
Robert Winterhie having in his hands a bow and arrows, 
went about to make a shoot of pleasure, and, in his draught, 
his bowstring brake; which the rude savages taking as a 
token of war, began to bend the force of their bows against 
our company, and drove them to their shifts very narrowly. 

In this port our General began to enquire diligently of the 
actions of Master Thomas Doughty, and found them not 
to be such as he looked for, but tending rather of contention 
or mutiny, or some other disorder, whereby, without redress, 
the success of the voyage might greatly have been hazarded. 
Whereupon the company was called together and made 
acquainted with the particulars of the cause, which were 
found, partly by Master Doughty's own confession, and 
partly by the evidence of the fact, to be true. Which when 
our General saw, although his private affection to Master 
Doughty, as he then in the presence of us all sacredly pro- 
tested, was great, yet the care he had of the state of the 
voyage, of the expectation of her Majesty, and of the 
honour of his country did more touch him, as indeed it ought, 
than the private respect of one man. So that the cause 
being throughly heard, and all things done in good order as 
near as might be to the course of our laws in England, it 
was concluded that Master Doughty should receive punish- 
ment according to the quality of the offence. And he, seeing 
no remedy but patience for himself, desired before his death 
to receive the communion, which he did at the hands of 
Master Fletcher, our minister, and our General himself ac- 
companied him in that holy action. Which being done, and 
the place of execution made ready, he having embraced our 
General, and taken his leave of all the company, with 
prayers for the Queen's Majesty and our realm, in quiet 
sort laid his head to the block, where he ended his life. This 
being done, our General made divers speeches to the whole 
company, persuading us to unity, obedience, love, and re- 
gard of our voyage; and for the better confirmation thereof, 


willed every man the next Sunday following to prepare him- 
self the communion, as Christian brethren and friends ought 
to do. Which was done in very reverent sort; and so with 
good contentment every man went about his business. 

The 17. day of August we departed the port of St. Julian* 
and the 20. day we fell with the Strait of Magellan, going 
into the South Sea; at the cape or headland whereof we 
found the body of a dead man, whose flesh was clean con- 
sumed. The 21. day we entered the Strait," which we found 
to have many turnings, and as it were shuttings-up, as if there 
were no passage at all. By means whereof we had the wind 
often against us ; so that some of the fleet recovering a cape 
or point of land, others should be forced to turn back again, 
and to come to an anchor where they could. In this Strait 
there be many fair harbours, with store of fresh water. But 
yet they lack their best commodity, for the water there is of 
such depth, that no man shall find ground to anchor in, ex- 
cept it be in some narrow river or comer, or between some 
rocks; so that if any extreme blasts or contrary winds do 
come, whereunto the place is much subject, it carrieth with it 
no small danger. The land on both sides is very huge and 
mountainous; the lower mountains whereof, although they 
be monstrous and wonderful to look upon for their height, 
yet there are others which in height exceed them in a strange 
manner, reaching themselves above their fellows so high, 
that between them did appear three regions of clouds. 
These mountains are covered with snow. At both the 
southerly and easterly parts of the Strait there are islands, 
among which the sea hath his indraught into the Straits, 
even as it hath in the main entrance of the frete.* This 
Strait is extreme cold, with frost and snow continually; the 
trees seem to stoop with the burden of the weather, and yet 
are green continually, and many good and sweet herbs 
do very plentifully grow and increase under them. The 
breadth of the Strait is in some places a league, in some 
other places two leagues and three leagues, and in some 

* The squadron was now reduced to tbree ships, the Swan and the 
Christopher, as well as the Portuguese prize, having been condemned as 
unseaworthy, and burnt or abandoned. 

" Drake here changed the name of the Pelican to the Golden Hind, the 
crest of Sir Christopiier Hatton. 'Lat. f return. 


other four leagues; but the narrowest place hath a league 

The 24. of August we arrived at an island in the Straits, 
where we found great store of fowl which could not fly, of 
the bigness of geese ; whereof \vt killed in less than one day 
3,000, and victualled ourselves throughly therewith. The 
6. day of September we entered the South Sea at the cape 
or head shore. The 7. day we were driven by a great storm 
from the entering into the South Sea, 200 leagues and odd 
in longitude, and one degree to the southward of the 
Strait; in which height, and so many leagues to the west- 
ward, the 15. day of September, fell out the eclipse of the 
moon at the hour of six of the clock at night. But neither 
did the ecliptical conflict of the moon impair our state, nor her 
clearing again amend us a whit; but the accustomed eclipse 
of the sea continued in his force, we being darkened more 
than the moon sevenfold.' 

From the bay which we called the Bay of Severing of 
Friends, we were driven back to the southward of the Straits 
in 57 degrees and a tierce; in which height we came to an 
anchor among the islands, having there fresh and very good 
water, with herbs of singular virtue. Not far from hence 
we entered another bay, where λνε found people, both men 
and women, in their canoes naked, and ranging from one 
island to another to seek their meat; who entered traffic 
with us for such things as they had. We returning hence 
northward again, found the third of October three islands, 
in one of which was such plenty of birds as is scant credible 
to report. The 8. day of October we lost sight of one of 
our consorts,^ wherein Master Winter was; who, as then 
we supposed, was put by a storm into the Straits again. 
Which at our return home we found to be true, and he not 
perished, as some of our company feared. Thus being come 
into the height of the Straits again, we ran, supposing 
the coast of Chili to lie as the general maps have described 
it, namely north-west; which we found to lie and trend to 
the north-east and eastwards. Whereby it appeareth that 
this part of Chili hath not been truly hitherto discovered, 

^ In this storm the Marigold went down with all hands. 
' The Elisabeth. Winter, having lost sight of the Admiral, sailed home. 
The Golden Hind was thus left to pursue her voyage alone. 


or at the least not truly reported, for the space of twelve 
degrees at the least; being set down either of purpose to 
deceive, or of ignorant conjecture. 

We continuing our course, fell the 29. of November with 
an island called La Mocha, where we cast anchor ; and our 
General, hoisting out our boat, went with ten of our com- 
pany to shore. Where we found people, whom the cruel and 
extreme dealings of the Spaniards have forced, for their 
own safety and liberty, to flee from the main, and to fortify 
themselves in this island. We being on land, the people came 
down to us to the water side with show of great courtesy, 
bringing to us potatoes, roots, and two very fat sheep ; which 
our General received, and gave them other things for them, 
and had promised to have water there. But the next day 
repairing again to the shore, and sending two men a-land 
with barrels to fill water, the people taking them for Span- 
iards (to whom they use to show no favour if they take 
them) laid violent hands on them, and, as we think, slew 
them. Our General seeing this, stayed here no longer, but 
weighed anchor, and set sail towards the coast of Chili. And 
drawing towards it, we met near to the shore an Indian in 
a canoa, who thinking us to have been Spaniards, came to 
us and told us, that at a place called Santiago, there was a 
great Spanish ship laden from the kingdom of Peru; for 
which good news our General gave him divers trifles. 
Whereof he was glad, and went along with us and brought 
us to the place, which is called the port of Valparaiso. When 
we came thither we found, indeed, the ship riding at anchor, 
having in her eight Spaniards and three negroes; who, 
thinking us to have been Spaniards, and their friends, 
welcomed us with a drum, and made ready a hotija^ of wine 
of Chili to drink to us. But as soon as we were entered, one 
of our company called Thomas Moon began to lay about him, 
and struck one of the Spaniards, and said unto him, Abaxo, 
perro! that is in English. 'Go down, dog!' One of these 
Spaniards, seeing persons of that quality in those seas, all 
to crossed and blessed himself. But, to be short, we stowed 
them under hatches, all save one Spaniard, who suddenly 
and desperately leapt overboard into the sea, and swam 



ashore to the town of Santiago, to give them warning of 
our arrival. 

They of the town, being not above nine households, 
presently fled away and abandoned the town. Our General 
manned his boat and the Spanish ship's boat, and went to 
the town; and, being come to it, we rifled it, and came to a 
small chapel, which we entered, and found therein a silver 
chalice, two cruets, and one altar-cloth, the spoil whereof our 
General gave to Master Fletcher, his minister. We found 
also in this town a warehouse stored with wine of Chili and 
many boards of cedar-wood ; all which wine we brought away 
with us, and certain of the boards to burn for firewood. 
And so, being come aboard, we departed the haven, having 
first set all the Spaniards on land, saving one John Griego, 
a Greek born, whom our General carried with him as pilot 
to bring him into the haven of Lima. 

When we were at sea our General rifled the ship, and 
found in her good store of the wine of Chili, and 25,000 
pesos of very pure and fine gold of Valdivia, amounting in 
value to 37,000 ducats of Spanish money, and above. So, 
going on our course, we arrived next at a place called 
Coquimbo, where our General sent fourteen of his men on 
land to fetch water. But they were espied by the Spaniards, 
who came with 300 horsemen and 200 footmen, and slew one 
of our men with a piece. The rest came aboard in safety, 
and the Spaniards departed. We went on shore again and 
buried our man, and the Spaniards came down again with a 
flag of truce; but we set sail, and would not trust them. 
From hence we went to a certain port called Tarapaca; 
where, being landed, we found by the sea side a Spaniard 
lying asleep, who had lying by him thirteen bars of silver, 
which w^eighed 4,000 ducats Spanish. We took the silver 
and left the man. Not far from hence, going on land for 
fresh water, we met with a Spaniard and an Indian boy 
driving eight llamas or sheep of Peru, which are as big as 
asses; every of which sheep had on his back two bags of 
leather, each bag containing 50 lb. weight of fine silver. So 
that, bringing both the sheep and their burthen to the ships, 
we found in all the bags eight hundred weight of silver. 

Herehence we sailed to a place called Arica; and, being 


entered the port, we found there three small barks, which we 
rifled, and found in one of them fifty-seven wedges of silver, 
each of them weighing about 20 lb. weight, and every of 
these wedges were of the fashion and bigness of a brickbat. 
In all these three barks, we found not one person. For 
they, mistrusting no strangers, were all gone a-land to the 
town, which consisteth of about twenty houses; \vhich we 
would have ransacked if our company had been better and 
more in number. But our General, contented with the spoil 
of the ships, left the town and put ofif again to sea, and set 
sail for Lima, and, by the way, met with a small bark, which 
he boarded, and found in her good store of linen cloth. 
Whereof taking some quantity, he let her go. 

To Lima we came the 13. of February; and, being entered 
the haven, we found there about twelve sail of ships lying 
fast moored at an anchor, having all their sails carried on 
shore; for the masters and merchants were here most se- 
cure, having never been assaulted by enemies, and at this 
time feared the approach of none such as we were. Our 
General rifled these ships, and found in one of them a chest 
full of reals of plate, and good store of silks and linen 
cloth; and took the chest into his own ship, and good store 
of the silks and linen. In which ship he had news of another 
ship called the Cacafuego^" which was gone towards Payta, 
and that the same ship was laden with treasure. Where- 
upon Ave stayed no longer here, but, cutting all the cables 
of the ships in the haven, we let them drive whither they 
would, either to sea or to the shore; and with all speed we 
followed the Cacafuego toward Payta, thinking there to have 
found her. But before we arrived there she was gone from 
thence towards Panama; whom our General still pursued, 
and by the Avay met with a bark laden with ropes and tackle 
for ships, which he boarded and searched, and found in her 
80 lb. weight of gold, and a crucifix of gold with goodly 
great emeralds set in it, which he took, and some of the 
cordage also for his own ship. From hence we departed, 
still following the Cacafuego; and our General promised 
our company that whosoever should first descr>' her should 
have his chain of gold for his good news. It fortuned that 


John Drake, going up into the top, descried her about three 
of the clock. And about six of the clock we came to her 
and boarded her, and shot at her three pieces of ordnance, 
and strake down her mizen; and, being entered, we found 
in her great riches, as jewels and precious stones, thirteen 
chests full of reals of plate, fourscore pound weight of gold, 
and six-and-twenty ton of silver. The place where we took 
this prize was called Cape de San Francisco, about 150 
leagues [south] from Panama. The pilot's name of this 
ship was Francisco; and amongst other plate that our 
General found in this ship he found two very fair gilt bowls 
of silver, which were the pilot's. To whom our General 
said, Senor Pilot, you have here two silver cups, but I must 
needs have one of them; which the pilot, because he could 
not otherwise choose, yielded unto, and gave the other to the 
steward of our General's ships. When this pilot departed 
from us, his boy said thus unto our General : Captain, our 
ship shall be called no more the Cacafuego, but the Caca- 
plata, and your ship shall be called the Cacafuego. Which 
pretty speech of the pilot's boy ministered matter of laughter 
to us, both then and long after. When our General had done 
what he would with this Cacafuego, he cast her off, and we 
went on our course still towards the west ; and not long after 
met with a ship laden with linen cloth and fine China dishes 
of white earth, and great store of China silks, of all which 
things we took as we listed. The owner himself of this ship 
was in her, who was a Spanish gentleman," from whom our 
General took a falcon of gold, with a great emerald in the 
breast thereof ;^^ and the pilot of the ship he took also with 
him, and so cast the ship off. 

This pilot brought us to the haven of Guatulco, the town 
whereof, as he told us, had but 17 Spaniards in it. As soon 
as we were entered this haven, we landed, and went presently 
to the town and to the town-house; where we found a judge 
sitting in judgment, being associated with three other offi- 
cers, upon three negroes that had conspired the burning 
of the town. Both which judges and prisoners we took, 
and brought them a-shipboard, and caused the chief judge 

^ Don Francisco de Zarate. 

^ Drake presented him in return with a hanger and a silver brazier. 


to write his letter to the town to command all the townsmen 
to avoid, that we might safely water there. Which being 
done, and they departed, we ransacked the town ; and in one 
house we found a pot, of the quantity of a bushel, full of 
reals of plate, which we brought to our ship. And here one 
Thomas Moon, one of our company, took a Spanish gentle- 
man as he was flying out of the town; and, searching him, 
he found a chain of gold about him, and other jewels, which 
he took, and so let him go. At this place our General, 
among other Spaniards, set ashore his Portugal pilot which 
he took at the islands of Cape Verde out of a ship of St. 
Mary port, of Portugal. And having set them ashore we 
departed hence, and sailed to the island of Canno; where 
our General landed, and brought to shore his own ship, and 
discharged her, mended and graved her, and furnished our 
ship with water and wood sufficiently. 

And while we were here we espied a ship and set sail 
after her, and took her, and found in her two pilots and a 
Spanish governor, going for the islands of the Philip- 
pinas. We searched the ship, and took some of her mer- 
chandises, and so let her go. Our General at this place and 
time, thinking himself, both in respect of his private injuries 
received from the Spaniards, as also of their contempts and 
indignities offered to our country and prince in general, 
sufficiently satisfied and revenged; and supposing that her 
Majesty at his return would rest contented with this service, 
purposed to continue no longer upon the Spanish coast, but 
began to consider and to consult of the best way for his 

He thought it not good to return by the Straits, for two 
special causes ; the one, lest the Spaniards should there wait 
and attend for him in great number and strength, whose 
hands, he, being left but one ship, could not possibly escape. 
The other cause was the dangerous situation of the mouth 
of the Straits in the South Sea; where continual storms 
reigning and blustering, as he found by experience, besides 
the shoals and sands upon the coast, he thought it not a good 
course to adventure that way. He resolved, therefore, to 
avoid these hazards, to go forward to the Islands of the 
Malucos, and th£rehenc£. to sail the course of the Portugals 


by the Cape of Buena Esperanza. Upon this resolution he 
began to think of his best way to the Malncos, and finding 
himself, where he now was, becalmed, he saw that of neces- 
sity he must be forced to take a Spanish course ; namely, to 
sail somewhat northerly to get a wind. We therefore set 
sail, and sailed 600 leagues at the least for a good wind; 
and thus much we sailed from the 16. of April till the third 
of June. 

The fifth of June, being in 43 degrees towards the pole 
Arctic, we found the air so cold, that our men being griev- 
ously pinched with the same, complained of the extremity 
thereof; and the further we Λvent, the more the cold in- 
creased upon us. Whereupon Ave thought it best for that 
time to seek the land, and did so ; finding it not mountainous, 
but low plain land, till we came within 38 degrees towards 
the line. In which height it pleased God to send us into a 
fair and good bay, with a good wind to enter the same. 
In this bay we anchored; and the people of the country, 
haA'ing their houses close by the water's side, shewed them- 
selves unto us, and sent a present to our General. When 
they came unto us, they greatly wondered at the things that 
we brought. But our General, according to his natural and 
accustomed humanity, courteously intreated them, and 
liberally bestowed on them necessary things to cover their 
nakedness; whereupon they supposed us to be gods, and 
would not be persuaded to the contrary. The presents which 
they sent to our General, were feathers, and cauls of net- 
work. Their houses are digged round about Avith earth, 
and have from the uttermost brims of the circle, clifts of 
wood set upon them, joining close together at the top like 
a spire steeple, which by reason of that closeness are very 
warm. Their bed is the ground with rushes strowed on it; 
and lying about the house, [they] have the fire in the midst. 
The men go naked; the women take bulrushes, and kemb 
them after the manner of hemp, and thereof make their 
loose garments, which being knit about their middles, hang 
down about their hips, having also about their shoulders a 
skin of deer, with the hair upon it. These women are very 
obedient and serviceable to their husbands. 

After they were departed from us, they came and visited 


us the second time, and brought with them feathers and 
bags of tobacco for presents. And when they came to the 
top of the hill, at the bottom whereof we had pitched our 
tents, they stayed themselves; where one appointed for 
speaker wearied himself with making a long oration; which 
done, they left their bows upon the hill, and came down with 
their presents. In the meantime the women, remaining 
upon the hill, tormented themselves lamentably, tearing their 
flesh from their cheeks, whereby we perceived that they 
were about a sacrifice. In the meantime our General with 
his company went to prayer, and to reading of the Scrip- 
tures, at which exercise they were attentive, and seemed 
greatly to be affected with it; but when they were come 
unto us, they restored again unto us those things which 
before we bestowed upon them. The news of our being 
there being spread through the country, the people that in- 
habited round about came down, and amongst them the king 
himself, a man of a goodly stature, and comely personage, 
Λvith many other tall and warlike men ; before whose coming 
were sent two ambassadors to our General, to signify that 
their king was coming, in doing of which message, their 
speech was continued about half an hour. This ended, they 
by signs requested our General to send something by their 
hand to their king, as a token that his coming might be in 
peace. Wherein our General having satisfied them, they 
returned with glad tidings to their king, who marched to us 
with a princely majesty-, the people crying continually after 
their manner; and as they drew near unto us, so did they 
strive to behave themselves in their actions with comeliness. 
In the fore-front was a man of a goodly personage, who 
bare the sceptre or mace before the king; whereupon hanged 
two crowns, a less and a bigger, with three chains of a 
marvellous length. The crowns were made of knit work, 
wrought artificially with feathers of divers colours. The 
chains were made of a bony substance, and few be the 
persons among them that are admitted to wear them; and 
of that number also the persons are stinted, as some ten, 
some twelve, &c. Next unto him which bare the sceptre, 
was the king himself, with his guard about his person, clad 
with coney skins, and other skins. After them follo\ved the 


naked common sort of people, every one having his face 
painted, some v^^ith white, some v^^ith black, and other colours, 
and having in their hands one thing or another for a present. 
Not so much as their children, but they also brought their 

In the meantime our General gathered his men together, 
and marched within his fenced place, making, against their 
approaching, a very warlike show. They being trooped 
together in their order, and a general salutation being made, 
there was presently a general silence. Then he that bare the 
sceptre before the king, being informed by another, whom 
they assigned to that ofifice, with a manly and lofty voice 
proclaimed that which the other spake to him in secret, 
continuing half an hour. Which ended, and a general Amen, 
as it were, given, the king with the whole number of men 
and women, the children excepted, came down without any 
weapon; who, descending to the foot of the hill, set them- 
selves in order. In coming towards our bulwarks and tents, 
the sceptre-bearer began a song, observing his measures in 
a dance, and that with a stately countenance ; whom the king 
with his guard, and every degree of persons, following, did 
in like manner sing and dance, saving only the women, 
which danced and kept silence. The General permitted 
them to enter within our bulwark, where they continued 
their song and dance a reasonable time. When they had 
satisfied themselves, they made signs to our General to sit 
down ; to whom the king and divers others made several 
orations, or rather supplications, that he would take their 
province and kingdom into his hand, and become their king, 
making signs that they would resign unto him their right 
and title of the whole land, and become his subjects. In 
which, to persuade us the better, the king and the rest, with 
one consent, and with great reverence, joyfully singing a 
song, did set the crown upon his head, enriched his neck 
with all their chains, and offered him many other things, 
honouring him by the name of Hioh, adding thereunto, as 
it seemed, a sign of triumph; which thing our General 
thought not meet to reject, because he knew not what honour 
and profit it might be to our country. Wherefore in the 
name, and to the use of her Majesty, he took the sceptre. 


crown, and dignity of the said country into his hands, wish- 
ing that the riches and treasure thereof might so con- 
veniently be transported to the enriching of her kingdom at 
home, as it aboundeth in the same. 

The common sort of people, leaving the king and his 
guard with our General, scattered themselves together with 
their sacrifices among our people, taking a diligent view of 
every person: and such as pleased their fancy (which were 
the youngest), they enclosing them about offered their 
sacrifices unto them with lamentable weeping, scratching and 
tearing their flesh from their faces with their nails, whereof 
issued abundance of blood. But we used signs to them of 
disliking this, and stayed their hands from force, and 
directed them upwards to the living God, whom only they 
ought to worship. They shewed unto us their wounds, and 
craved help of them at our hands ; whereupon we gave them 
lotions, plaisters, and ointments agreeing to the state of their 
griefs, beseeching God to cure their diseases. Every third 
day they brought their sacrifices unto us, until they under- 
stood our meaning, that we had no pleasure in them; yet 
they could not be long absent from us, but daily frequented 
our company to the hour of our departure, which departure 
seemed so grievous unto them, that their joy was turned into 
sorrow. They entreated us, that being absent we would re- 
member them, and by stealth provided a sacrifice, which we 

Our necessary business being ended, our General with 
his company travelled up into the country to their villages, 
where we found herds of deer by a thousand in a company, 
being most large, and fat of body. We found the whole 
country to be a warren of a strange kind of coneys; their 
bodies in bigness as be the Barbary coneys, their heads as the 
heads of ours, the feet of a want," and the tail of a rat, 
being of great length. Under her chin is on either side a 
bag, into the which she gathereth her meat, when she hath 
filled her belly abroad. The people eat their bodies, and 
make great account of their skins, for their king's coat was 
made of them. Our General called this country Nova Al- 
bion, and that for two causes; the one in respect of the 

" Mole. 
HC— Vol. 33 (8J 


white banks and cliirs, which lie towards the sea, and the 
other, because it might have some affinity with our country 
in name, which sometime was so called. There is no part 
of earth here to be taken up, wherein there is not some 
probable show of gold or silver. 

At our departure hence our General set up a monument 
of our being there, as also of her Majesty's right and title 
to the same; namely a plate, nailed upon a fair great post, 
whereupon was engraved her Majesty's name, the day and 
year of our arrival there, with the free giving up of the 
province and people into her Majesty's hands, together with 
her Highness' picture and arms, in a piece of six pence of 
current English money, under the plate, whereunder was 
also written the name of our General. 

It seemeth that the Spaniards hitherto had never been in 
this part of the country, neither did ever discover the land 
by many degrees to the southwards of this place. 

After we had set sail from hence, we continued without 
sight of land till the 13. day of October following, which 
day in the morning we fell with certain islands eight degrees 
to the northward of the line, from which islands came a 
great number of canoas, having in some of them four, in 
some six, and in some also fourteen men, bringing with them 
cocos and other fruits. Their canoas were hollow within, 
and cut with great art and cunning, being very smooth 
within and without, and bearing a glass" as if it were a 
horn daintily burnished, having a prow and a stern of one 
sort, yielding inward circle-wise, being of a great height, 
and full of certain white shells for a bravery; and on each 
side of them lie out two pieces of timber about a yard and 
a half long, more or less, according to the smallness or big- 
ness of the boat. These people have the nether part of their 
ears cut into a round circle, hanging down very low upon 
their cheeks, whereon they hang things of a reasonable 
weight. The nails of their hands are an inch long, their 
teeth are as black as pitch, and they renew them often, by 
eating of an herb with a kind of powder, which they always 
carry about them in a cane for the same purpose. 

Leaving this island the night after we fell with it, the 18. 
** I. e., having a gloss. 


of October we lighted upon divers others, some whereof 
made a great show of inhabitants. We continued our course 
by the islands of Tagulanda,^^ Zelon, and Zewarra, being 
friends to the Portugals, the first whereof hath growing in 
it great store of cinnamon. The 14. of November we fell in 
with the islands of Maluco. Which day at night (having 
directed our course to run with Tidore) in coasting along 
the island of Mutyr" belonging to the king of Ternate, his 
deputy or vice-king seeing us at sea, came with his canoa 
to us without all fear, and came aboard; and after some 
conference with our General, willed him in any wise to run 
in with Ternate, and not with Tidore, assuring him that the 
king would be glad of his coming, and would be ready to 
do what he would require, for which purpose he himself 
would that night be with the king, and tell him the news. 
With whom if he once dealt, we should find that as he was 
a king, so his word should stand ; adding further, that if he 
went to Tidore before he came to Ternate, the king would 
have nothing to do with us, because he held the Portugal 
as his enemy. Whereupon our General resolved to run with 
Ternate. Where the next morning early we came to anchor ; 
at which time our General sent a messenger to the king, with 
a velvet cloak for a present and token of his coming to be 
in peace, and that he required nothing but traffic and ex- 
change of merchandise, whereof he had good store, in such 
things as he wanted. 

In the meantime the vice-king had been with the king 
according to his promise, signifying unto him what good 
things he might receive from us by traffic. Whereby the 
king was moved with great liking towards us, and sent to 
our General, with special message, that he should have what 
things he needed and would require, with peace and friend- 
ship; and moreover that he would yield himself and the 
right of his island to be at the pleasure and commandment 
of so famous a prince as we served. In token whereof he 
sent to our General a signet ; and within short time after 
came in his own person, with boats and canoas, to our ship, 
to bring her into a better and safer road than she was in at 

" Tagulandang, to the north-east of Celebes. 
^^Motir, one of the Ternate Moluccas. 


that present. In the meantime, our General's messenger, 
being come to the Court, was met by certain noble person- 
ages with great solemnity, and brought to the king, at whose 
hands he was most friendly and graciously entertained. 

The king, purposing to come to our ship, sent before four 
great and large canoas, in every one whereof were certain 
of his greatest states^' that were about him, attired in white 
lawn of cloth of Calicut, having over their heads, from the 
one end of the canoa to the other, a covering of thin per- 
fumed mats, borne up with a frame made of reeds for the 
same use; under which every one did sit in his order ac- 
cording to his dignity, to keep him from the heat of the 
sun; divers of whom being of good age and gravity, did 
make an ancient and fatherly show. There were also divers 
young and comely men attired in white, as were the others; 
the rest were soldiers, which stood in comely order round 
about on both sides. Without whom sat the rowers in certain 
galleries; which being three on a side all along the canoas, 
did lie off from the side thereof three or four yards, one 
being orderly builded lower than another, in every of which 
galleries were the number of fourscore rowers. These 
canoas were furnished with warlike munition, every man 
for the most part having his sword and target, with his 
dagger, beside other weapons, as lances, calivers, darts, bows 
and arrows ; also every canoa had a small cast base mounted 
at the least one full yard upon a stock set upright. Thus 
coming near our ship, in order, they rowed about us one 
after another, and passing by, did their homage with great 
solemnity ; the great personages beginning with great gravity 
and fatherly countenances, signifying that the king had 
sent them to conduct our ship into a better road. Soon after 
the king himself repaired, accompanied with six grave and 
ancient persons, who did their obeisance with marvellous 
humility. The king was a man of tall stature, and seemed 
to be much delighted with the sound of our music; to 
whom, as also to his nobility, our General gave presents, 
wherewith they were passing well contented. 

At length the king craved leave of our General to depart, 
promising the next day to come aboard, and in the meantime 

" States— men of property or estate. 


to send us such victuals as were necessary for our provi- 
sion. So that the same night we received of them meal, 
which they call sagu, made of the tops of certain trees, tast- 
ing in the mouth like sour curds, but melteth like sugar, 
whereof they make certain cakes, which may be kept the 
space of ten years, and yet then good to be eaten. We 
had of them store of rice, hens, unperfect and liquid sugar, 
sugar-canes, and a fruit which they call figo,^^ with store 
of cloves. 

The king having promised to come aboard, brake his 
promise, but sent his brother to make his excuse, and to 
entreat our General to come on shore, offering himself pawn 
aboard for his safe return. Whereunto our General con- 
sented not, upon mislike conceived of the breach of his 
promise; the whole company also utterly refusing it. But 
to satisfy him, our General sent certain of his gentlemen to 
the Court, to accompany the king's brother, reserving the 
vice-king for their safe return. They were received of an- 
other brother of the king's, and other states, and were con- 
ducted with great honour to the castle. The place that they 
were brought unto was a large and fair house, where were 
at the least a thousand persons assembled. 

The king being yet absent, there sat in their places 60 
grave personages, all which were said to be of the king's 
council. There were besides four grave persons, apparelled 
all in red, down to the ground, and attired on their heads 
like the Turks ; and these were said to be Romans ^' and lig- 
iers ^ there to keep continual traffic with the people of Ter- 
nate. There were also two Turks ligiers in this place, and 
one Italian. The king at last came in guarded with twelve 
lances, covered over with a rich canopy with embossed gold. 
Our men, accompanied with one of their captains called 
Mora, rising to meet him, he graciously did welcome and 
entertain them. He was attired after the manner of the 
country, but more sumptuously than the rest. From his 
waist down to the ground was all cloth of gold, and the same 
very rich; his legs were bare, but on his feet were a pair of 
shoes, made of Cordovan skin. In the attire of his head 
were finely wreathed hooped rings of gold, and about his 

*8 Plantains. ^* Probably Greeks (Arab. Rumi). * Resident agents. 


neck he had a chain of perfect gold, the links whereof 
were great, and one fold double. On his fingers he had six 
very fair jewels; and sitting in his chair of state, at his right 
hand stood a page with a fan in his hand, breathing and 
gathering the air to the king. The same was in length two 
foot, and in breadth one foot, set with eight sapphires richly 
embroidered, and knit to a staff three foot in length, by the 
which the page did hold and move it. Our gentlemen hav- 
ing delivered their message and received order accordingly, 
were licensed to depart, being safely conducted back again 
by one of the king's council. This island is the chief of all the 
islands of Maluco, and the king hereof is king of 70 islands 
besides. The king with his people are Moors in religion, 
observing certain new moons, with fastings; during which 
fasts they neither eat nor drink in the day, but in the night. 

After that our gentlemen were returned, and that we had 
here by the favour of the king received all necessary things 
that the place could yield us; our General considering the 
great distance, and how far he was yet off from his coun- 
try, thought it not best here to linger the time any longer, 
but weighing his anchors, set out of the island, and sailed 
to a certain little island to the southwards of Celebes, where 
we graved our ship, and continued there, in that and other 
businesses, 26 days. This island is throughly grown with 
wood of a large and high growth, very straight, and without 
boughs, save only in the head or top, whose leaves are not 
much differing from our broom in England. Amongst these 
trees night by night, through the whole land, did shew them- 
selves an infinite swarm of fiery worms flying in the air, 
whose bodies being no bigger than our common English 
flies, m'ake such a show and light as if every twig or tree 
had been a burning candle. In this place breedeth also 
wonderful store of bats, as big as large hens. Of cray- 
fishes also here wanted no plenty, and they of exceeding big- 
ness, one whereof was sufficient for four hungry stomachs 
at a dinner, being also very good and restoring meat, where- 
of we had experience: and they dig themselves holes in the 
earth like coneys. 

When we had ended our business here w6 weighed, and 
set sail to run for the Malucos. But having at that time a 


bad wind, and being amongst the islands, with much difficulty 
we recovered to the northward of the island of Celebes; 
where by reason of contrary winds, not able to continue our 
course to run westwards, we were enforced to alter the same 
to the southward again, finding that course also to be very 
hard and dangerous for us, by reason of infinite shoals 
which He off and among the islands ; whereof we had too 
much trial, to the hazard and danger of our ship and lives. 
For, of all other days, upon the 9. of January, in the year 
1579,^ we ran suddenly upon a rock, where we stuck fast 
from eight of the clock at night till four of the clock in the 
afternoon the next day, being indeed out of all hope to es- 
cape the danger. But our General, as he had always hitherto 
shewed himself courageous, and of a good confidence in the 
mercy and protection of God, so now he continued in the 
same. And lest he should seem to perish wilfull}'^, both he 
and we did our best endeavour to save ourselves; which it 
pleased God so to bless, that in the end we cleared ourselves 
most happily of the danger. 

We lighted our ship upon the rocks of three ton of cloves, 
eight pieces of ordnance, and certain meal and beans; and 
then the wind, as it were in a moment by the special 
grace of God, changing from the starboard to the larboard 
of the ship, we hoised our sails, and the happy gale drove 
our ship off the rock into the sea again, to the no little com- 
fort of all our hearts, for which we gave God such praise 
and thanks, as so great a benefit required. 

The 8. of February following, we fell with the fruitful 
island of Barateve^ having in the mean time suffered many 
dangers by winds and shoals. The people of this island are 
comely in body and stature, and of a civil behaviour, just in 
dealing, and courteous to strangers ; whereof we had the ex- 
perience sundry ways, they being most glad of our presence, 
and very ready to relieve our wants in those things which 
their country did yield. The men go naked, saving their 
heads and loins, every man having something or other 
hanging at their ears. Their women are covered from the 
middle down to the foot, wearing a great number of brace- 
lets upon their arms; for some had eight upon each arm, 
2^1. e. 1580. «Batjan. 


being made some of bone, some of Horn, and some of brass, 
the lightest whereof, by our estimation, weighed two ounces 
apiece. With this people linen-cloth is good merchandise, 
and of good request; whereof they make rolls for their 
heads, and girdles to wear about them. Their island is both 
rich and fruitful; rich in gold, silver, copper, and sulphur, 
wherein they seem skilful and expert, not only to try the 
same, but in working it also artificially into any form and 
fashion that pleaseth them. Their fruits be divers and 
plentiful; as nutmegs, ginger, long pepper, lemons, cucum- 
bers, cocos, fign, sagu, with divers other sorts. And among 
all the rest we had one fruit, in bigness, form and husk, like a 
bay berry, hard of substance and pleasant of taste, which being 
sodden becometh soft, and is a most good and wholesome 
victual ; whereof we took reasonable store, as we did also of 
the other fruits and spices. So that to confess a truth, since 
the time that we first set out of our own country of England, 
we happened upon no place, Ternate only excepted, wherein 
we found more comforts and better means of refreshing. 

At our departure from Barateve, we set our course for 
Java Major f^ where arriving, we found great courtesy, and 
honourable entertainment. This island is governed by five 
kings, whom they call Rajah; as Rajah Donazu, and Rajah 
Mang Bange, and Rajah Cabuccapollo, which live as having 
one spirit and one mind. Of these five we had four a-shipboard 
at once, and two or three often. They are wonderfully de- 
lighted in coloured clothes, as red and green; the upper 
part of their bodies are naked, save their heads, whereupon 
they vv^ear a Turkish roll as do the Maluccians. From the 
middle downward they wear a pintado of silk, trailing upon 
the ground, in colour as they best like. The Maluccians hate 
that their women should be seen of strangers ; but these offer 
them of high courtesy, yea, the kings themselves. The peo- 
ple are of goodly stature and warlike, well provided of 
swords and targets, with daggers, all being of their own 
work, and most artificially done, both in tempering their 
metal, as also in the form; whereof we bought reasonable 
store. They have an house in e\'^ery village for their com- 
mon assembly ; every day they meet twice, men, women, and 



children, bringing with them such victuals as they think good, 
some fruits, some rice boiled, some hens roasted, some sagu, 
having a table made three foot from the ground, whereon 
they set their meat, that every person sitting at the table 
may eat, one rejoicing in the company of another. They 
boil their rice in an earthen pot, made in form of a sugar 
loaf, being full of holes, as our pots which we water our 
gardens withal, and it is open at the great end, wherein they 
put their rice dry, without any moisture. In the mean time 
they have ready another great earthen pot, set fast in a 
furnace, boiling full of water, whereinto they put their pot 
with rice, by such measure, that they swelling become soft at 
the first, and by their swelling stopping the holes of the pot, 
admit no more water to enter, but the more they are boiled, 
the harder and more firm substance they become. So that 
in the end they are a firm and good bread, of the which with 
oil, butter, sugar, and other spices, they make divers sorts 
of meats very pleasant of taste, and nourishing to nature. 
* * ♦ Not long before our departure, they told us that not 
far off there were such great ships as ours, wishing us to 
beware ; upon this our captain would stay no longer. From 
Java Major we sailed for the Cape of Good Hope, which 
was the first land we fell withal ; neither did we touch with 
it, or any other land, until we came to Sierra Leona, upon 
the coast of Guinea; notwithstanding we ran hard aboard 
the cape, finding the report of the Portugals to be most false, 
who affirm that it is the most dangerous cape of the world, 
never without intolerable storms and present danger to 
travellers which come near the same. This cape is a most 
stately thing, and the fairest cape we saw in the whole cir- 
cumference of the earth, and we passed by it the i8. of June. 
From thence we continued our course to Sierra Leona, on 
the coast of Guinea, where we arrived the 22. of July, and 
found necessary provisions, great store of elephants, oysters 
upon trees of one kind,^* spawning and increasing infinitely, 
the oyster suffering no bud to grow. We departed thence 
the four and twentieth day. 

We arrived in England the third of November, 1580, being 
the third year of our departure. 

^ The mangrove. 


Nearly five years elapsed between Drake's return from his 
Famous Voyage and the despatch of the formidable armament 
commemorated in the following pages. During the last of these 
years the march of events had been remarkably rapid. Gilbert, 
who had been empowered by Elizabeth, in the 3-ear of Frobisher's 
last expedition, to found colonies in America, had sailed for that 
purpose to Newfoundland (1583), and had perished at sea on 
his way homeward. Raleigh, who had succeeded to his half- 
brother's enterprises, had despatched his exploring expedition to 
' Virginia,' under Amadas and Barlow, in 1584, and had followed 
it up in the next year (1585) by an actual colony. In April Sir 
Richard Greenville sailed from Plymouth, and at Raleigh's ex- 
pense established above a hundred colonists on the island of 
Roanoak. Drake's Great Armada left Plymouth in September of 
the same 3^ear. It marked a turning-point in the relations between 
the English and Spanish monarchs. Elizabeth, knowing that the 
suppression of the insurrection in the Netherlands ΛνοηΜ be fol- 
lowed by an attack upon England, was treating with the insur- 
gents. Philip deemed it prudent to lay an embargo on all her 
subjects, together with their ships and goods, that might be 
found in his dominions. Elizabeth at once authorized general 
reprisals on the ships and goods of Spaniards. A company of 
adventurers was quickly formed for taking advantage of this per- 
mission on a scale commensurate with the national resources. 
They equipped an armada of twenty-five vessels, manned by 2,300 
men, and despatched it under the command of Drake to plunder 
Spanish America. Frobisher was second in command. Two- 
thirds of the booty were to belong to the adventurers; the re- 
maining third was to be divided among the men employed in the 

Drake's armament of 1585 was the greatest that had ever 
crossed the Atlantic. After plundering some vessels at the Vigo 
river, he sailed for the West Indies by way of the Canaries and 
Cape Verde Islands, hoisted the English flag over Santiago and 



burnt the town, crossed the Atlantic in eighteen days, and arrived 
at Dominica. At daybreak, on New Year's Day, 1586, Drake's 
soldiers landed in Espanola, a few miles to the west of the capital, 
and before evening Carlile and Powell had entered the city, which 
the colonists only saved from destruction by the payment of a 
heavy ransom. Drake's plan was to do exactly the same at 
Carthagena and Nombre de Dios, and thence to strike across the 
isthmus and secure the treasure that lay waiting for transport at 
Panama. Drake held St. Domingo for a month, and Carthagena 
for six weeks. He was compelled to forego the further prosecu- 
tion of his enterprise. A deadly fever, which had attacked the 
men during the sojourn at Santiago, still continued its ravages. 
In existing circumstances, even had Nombre de Dios been suc- 
cessfully attacked, the march to Panama was out of the question ; 
and after consultation with the military commanders, Drake re- 
solved on sailing home at once by way of Florida. He brought 
back with him all the colonists who had been left by Sir Richard 
Greenville in ' Virginia.* Drake had offered either to furnish them 
with stores, and to leave them a ship, or to take them home. The 
former offer was accepted: but a furious storm which ensued 
caused them to change their minds. They recognized in it the 
hand of God, whose will it evidently was that they should no 
longer be sojourners in the American wilderness ; and the first 
English settlement of 'Virginia' was abandoned accordingly. 

Ten years afterwards (1595) Drake was again at the head of 
a similar expedition. The second command was given to his old 
associate Hawkins, Frobisher, his Vice-Admiral in 1585, having 
recently died of the wound received at Crozon. This time 
Nombre de Dios was taken and burnt, and 750 soldiers set out 
under Sir Thomas Baskerville to march to Panama : but at the 
first of the three forts which the Spaniards had by this time con- 
structed, the march had to be abandoned. Drake did not long 
survive this second failure of his favourite scheme. He was at- 
tacked by dysentery a fortnight afterwards, and in a month he 
died. When he felt the hand of death upon him, he rose, dressed 
himself, and endeavoured to make a farewell speech to those 
around him. Exhausted by the effort, he was lifted to his berth, 
and within an hour breathed his last. Hawkins had died off 
Puerto Rico six weeks previously. 

The following narrative is in the main the composition of 


Walter Biggs, who commanded a company of musketeers under 
Carlile. Biggs was one of the five hundred and odd men who 
succumbed to the fever. He died shortly after the fleet sailed 
from Carthagena ; and the narrative was completed by some com- 
rade. The story of this expedition, which had inflicted such 
damaging blows on the Spaniards in America, was eminently cal- 
culated to inspire courage among those who were resisting them 
in Europe. Gates, one of Carlile's lieutenants, obtained the manu- 
script and prepared it for the press, accompanied by illustrative 
maps and plans. The publication was delayed by the Spanish 
Armada; but a copy found its way to Holland, where it was 
translated into Latin, and appeared at Leyden, in a slightly 
abridged form, in 1588. The original English narrative duly ap- 
peared in London in the next year. The document called the 
'Resolution of the Land-Captains' was inserted by Hakluyt when 
he reprinted the narrative in 1600. 


[Narrative mainly by Captain Walter Biggs] 

A Summary and True Discourse of Sir FRANCIS DRAKE'S West 
Indian Voyage, begun in the year 1583. Wherein were taken 
the cities of Santiago, Santo Domingo, Carthagena, and the 
town of St. Augustine, in Florida. Published by Master 
Thomas Gates. 

THIS worthy knight, for the service of his prince and 
country, having prepared his w^hole fleet, and gotten 
them down to Plymouth, in Devonshire, to the num- 
ber of five and twenty sail of ships and pinnaces, and having 
assembled of soldiers and mariners to the number of 2,300 
in the whole, embarked them and himself at Plymouth afore- 
said, the 12. day of September, 1585, being accompanied with 
these men of name and charge which hereafter follow: 
Master Christopher Carlile, Lieutenant-General, a man of 
long experience in the wars as well by sea as land, who had 
formerly carried high offices in both kinds in many fights, 
which he discharged always very happily, and with great 
good reputation; Anthony Powell, Sergeant-Major; Captain 
Matthew Morgan, and Captain John Sampson, Corporals 
of the Field. These officers had commandment over the rest 
of the land-captains, whose names hereafter follow: Cap- 
tain Anthony Piatt, Captain Edward Winter, Captain John 
Goring, Captain Robert Pew, Captain George Barton, Cap- 
tain John Merchant, Captain William Cecil, Captain Walter 
Biggs,^ Captain John Hannam, Captain Richard Stanton. 
Captain Martin Frobisher, Vice-Admiral, a man of great 
experience in seafaring actions, who had carried the chief 
charge of many ships himself, in sundry voyages before, 
being now shipped in the Primrose; Captain Francis Knolles, 
Rear-Admiral in the galleon Leicester; Master Thomas 
Venner, captain in the Elisabeth Bonadventiire, under the 

1 The writer of the first part of the narrative. 



General ; Master Edward Winter, captain in the Aid; Master 
Christopher Carlile, the Lieutenant-General, captain of the 
Tiger; Henry White, captain of the Sea-Dragon; Thomas 
Drake i' captain of the Thomas; Thomas Seeley, captain of 
the Minion; Baily, captain of the Talbot; Robert Cross, 
captain of the bark Bond; George Fortescue, captain of the 
bark Bonner; Ed-ward Careless, captain of the Hope; James 
Erizo, captain of the White Lion; Thomas Moon, captain of 
the Francis; John Rivers, captain of the Vantage; John 
Vaughan, captain of the Drake; John Varney, captain of the 
George; John Martin, captain of the Benjamin; Edward Gil- 
man, captain of the Scout; Richard Hawkins, captain of the 
galliot called the Duck; Bitfield, captain of the Swallow. 

After our going hence, which was the 14. of September, 
in the year of our Lord 1585, and taking our course towards 
Spain, we had the wind for a few days somewhat scant, and 
sometimes calm. And being arrived near that part of Spain 
which is called the Moors," we happened to espy divers sails, 
which kept their course close by the shore, the weather being 
fair and calm. The General caused the Vice-Admiral to go 
with the pinnaces well manned to see what they were ; who 
upon sight of the said pinnaces approaching near unto them, 
abandoned for the most part all their ships, being Frenchmen, 
laden all with salt, and bound homewards into France. 
Amongst which ships, being all of small burthen, there was 
one so well liked, which also had no man in her, as being 
brought unto the General, he thought good to make stay of 
her for the service, meaning to pay for her, as also accord- 
ingly he performed at our return ; \vhich bark was called 
the Drake. The rest of these ships, being eight or nine, 
were dismissed without anything at all taken from them. 
Who being afterwards put somewhat farther off from the 
shore, by the contrariety of the wind, we happened to meet 
with some other French ships, full laden with Newland fish, 
being upon their return homeward from the said Newfound- 
land; whom the General after some speech had with them, 
and seeing plainly that they were Frenchmen, dismissed, 
without once suffering any man to go aboard of them. 

The day following, standing in with the shore again, we 

3 Francis Drake's brother. ^ Muro^ S. of Cape Finisterre. 


descried another tall ship of twelve score tons or thereabouts, 
upon whom Master Carlile, the Lieutenant-General, being in 
the Tiger, undertook the chase; whom also anon after the 
Admiral followed. And the Tiger having caused the said 
strange ship to strike her sails, kept her there without suffer- 
ing anybody to go aboard until the Admiral was come up; 
who forthwith sending for the master, and divers others of 
their principal men, and causing them to be severally exam- 
ined, found the ship and goods to be belonging to the inhabi- 
tants of St. Sebastian, in Spain, but the mariners to be for 
the most part belonging to St. John de Luz, and the Pas- 
sage.* In this ship was great store of dry Newland fish, 
commonly called with us Poor John; whereof afterwards, 
being thus found a lawful prize, there was distribution made 
into all the ships of the fleet, the same being so new and good, 
as it did very greatly bestead us in the whole course of our 
voyage. A day or two after the taking of this ship we put 
in within the Isles of Bayon^ for lack of favourable wind. 
Where we had nc sooner anchored some part of the fleet, but 
the General commanded all the pinnaces with the shipboats 
to be manned, and every man to be furnished with such arms 
as were needful for that present service ; which being done, 
the General put himself into his galley, which was also well 
furnished, and rowing towards the city of Bayon, with in- 
tent, and the favour of the Almighty, to surprise it. Before 
we had advanced one half-league of our way there came a 
messenger, being an English merchant, from the governor, 
to see what strange fleet we were ; who came to our General, 
conferred a \vhile with him, and after a small time spent, 
our General called for Captain Sampson, and willed him to 
go to the governor of the city, to resolve him of two points. 
The first to know if there were any mars between Spain and 
England; the second, why our merchants with their goods 
were embarged or arrested? Thus departed Captain Samp- 
son with the said messenger to the city, where he found the 
governor and people much amazed of such a sudden accident. 
The General, with the advice and counsel of Master Carlile, 
his Lieutenant-General, who was in the galley with him, 

*Passages, E. of San Sebastian. 

Β The Cies Islets, at the mouth of the Vigo River. 


thought not good to make any stand, till such time as they 
were within the shot of the city, where they might be ready 
upon the return of Captain Sampson, to make a sudden at- 
tempt, if cause did require, before it were dark. 

Captain Sampson returned with his message in this sort :— 
First, touching peace or Λvars, the governor said he knew of 
no wars and that it 1-ay not in him to make any, he being so 
mean a subject as he was. And as for the stay of the 
merchants with their goods, it was the king's pleasure, but 
not li'ith intent to endamage any man. And that the king's 
counter-commandment was (which had been received in that 
place some seven-night before) that English merchants with 
their goods should be discharged. For the more verifying 
whereof, he sent such merchants as were in the town of our 
nation, who trafficked those parts; which being at large de- 
clared to our General by them, counsel was taken what might 
best be done. And for that the night approached, it was 
thought needful to land our forces, which was done in the 
shutting up of the day; and having quartered ourselves to our 
most advantage, Avith sufficient guard upon every strait, we 
thought to rest ourselves for that night there. The Governor 
sent us some refreshing, as bread, wine, oil, apples, grapes, 
marmalade and such like. About midnight the weather 
began to overcast, insomuch that it was thought meeter to 
repair aboard, than to make any longer abode on land. And 
before Λνε could recover the fleet a great tempest arose, 
which caused many of our ships to drive from their anchor- 
hold, and some were forced to sea in great peril, as the bark 
Talbot, the bark Hawkins, and the Speedwell; which Speed- 
tuell only was driven into England, the others recovered' 
us again. The extremity of the storm lasted three days; 
which no sooner began to assuage, but Master Carlile, our 
Lieutenant-General, was sent with his owm ship and three 
others, as also with the galley and with divers pinnaces, to 
see what he might do above Vigo, where he took many boats 
and some carvels, diversely laden with things of small value, 
but chiefly with household stuff, running into the high coun- 
try. And amongst the rest he found one boat laden with the 
principal church stuff of the high church of Vigo, where also 
was their great cross of silver, of very fair embossed work. 


and double-gilt all over, having cost them a great mass of 
money. They complained to have lost in all kinds of goods 
above thirty thousand ducats in this place. 

The next day the General with his whole fleet went from 
up the Isles of Bay ο η to a very good harbour above Vigo, 
where Master Carlile stayed his coming, as well for the more 
quiet riding of his ships, as also for the good commodity of 
fresh watering which the place there did afford full well. 
In the meantime the governor of Galicia had reared such 
forces as he might (his numbers by estimate were some 
2000 foot and 300 horse), and marched from Bayona to this 
part of the country, which lay in sight of our fleet; 
where, making a stand, he sent to parley with our General. 
Which was granted by our General, so it might be in boats 
upon the water; and for safety of their persons there were 
pledges delivered on both sides. Which done, the governor 
of Galicia put himself with two others into our Vice-Ad- 
miral's skiff, the same having been sent to the shore for him, 
and in like sort our General went in his own skiff. Where 
by them it was agreed we should furnish ourselves with 
fresh water, to be taken by our own people quietly on the 
land, and have all other such necessaries, paying for the 
same, as the place would afford. 

When all our business was ended we departed, and took our 
way by the Islands of Canaria, which are esteemed some 
300 leagues from this part of Spain; and falling purposely 
with Ρ alma, with intention to have taken our pleasure of 
that place, for the full digesting of many things into order, 
and the better furnishing our store with such several good 
things as it affordeth very abundantly, we were forced by 
the vile sea-gate, which at that present fell out, and by the 
naughtiness of the landing-place, being but one, and that 
under the favour of many platforms well furnished with 
great ordnance, to depart with the receipt of many of their 
cannon-shot, some into our ships and some besides, some of 
them being in very deed full cannon high. But the only or 
chief mischief was the dangerous sea-surge, which at shore 
all alongst plainly threatened the overthrow of as many 
pinnaces and boats as for that time should have attempted 
any landing at all. 


Now seeing the expectation of this attempt frustrated by 
the causes aforesaid, we thought it meeter to fall with the 
Isle Ferro, to see if we could find any better fortune; and 
coming to the island we landed a thousand men in a valley 
under a high mountain, where we stayed some two or three 
hours. In which time the inhabitants, accompanied with a 
young fellow born in England, who dwelt there with them, 
came unto us, shewing their state to be so poor that they 
were all ready to starve, which was not untrue; and there- 
fore without anything gotten, we were all commanded pres- 
ently to embark, so as that night we put off to sea south- 
south-east along towards the coast of Barbary. 

Upon Saturday in the morning, being the 13. of Novem- 
ber, we fell with Cape Blank, which is a low land and shallow 
water, where we catched store of fish; and doubling the 
cape, we put into the bay, where we found certain French 
ships of war, whom we entertained with great courtesy, and 
there left them. This afternoon the whole fleet assembled, 
which was a little scattered about their fishing, and put from 
thence to the Isles of Cape Verde, sailing till the 16. of the 
same month in the morning; on which day we descried the 
Island of Santiago. And in the evening we anchored the 
fleet between the town called the Playa or Praya and San,' 
tiago; where we put on shore 1000 men or more, under the 
leading of Master Christopher Carlile, Lieutenant-General, 
who directed the service most like a wise commander. The 
place where we had first to march did afford no good order, 
for the ground was mountainous and full of dales, being a 
very stony and troublesome passage; but such was his in- 
dustrious disposition, as he would never leave, until we had 
gotten up to a fair plain, where we made stand for the as- 
sembling of the army. And when we were all gathered 
together upon the plain, some two miles from the town, the 
Lieutenant-General thought good not to make attempt till 
daylight, because there was not one that could serve for 
guide or giving knoAvledge at all of the place. And there- 
fore after having well rested, even half an hour before day, 
he commanded the army to be aivided into three special 
parts, such as he appointed, whereas before we had marched 
by several companies, being thereuntG forced by the badness 


of the way as is aforesaid. Now by the time we were thus 
ranged into a very brave order, daylight began to appear. 
And being advanced hard to the wall, we saw no enemy to 
resist. Whereupon the Lieutenant-General appointed Cap- 
tain Sampson with thirty shot," and Captain Barton with 
other thirty, to go down into the town, which stood in the 
valley under us, and might very plainly be viewed all over 
from that place where the whole army was now arrived ; 
and presently after these captains was sent the great ensign, 
which had nothing in it but the plain English cross, to be 
placed towards the sea, that our fleet might see St. George's 
cross flourish in the enemy's fortress. Order was given that 
all the ordnance throughout the town and upon all the plat- 
forms, which were about fifty pieces all ready charged, 
should be shot off in honour of the Queen's Majesty's corona- 
tion day, being the 17. of November, after the yearly custom 
of England, which was so answered again by the ordnance 
out of all the ships in the fleet, which now was come near, 
as it was strange to hear such a thundering noise last so long 
together. In this mean while the Lieutenant-General held 
still the most part of his force on the hilltop, till such time 
as the town was quartered out for the lodging of the whole 
army. Which being done, every captain took his own quar- 
ter; and in the evening was placed such a sufficient guard 
upon every part of the town that we had no cause to fear 
any present enemy. Thus we continued in the city the space 
of fourteen days, taking such spoils as the place yielded, 
which were, for the most part, wine, oil, meal, and some 
other such like things for victual as vinegar, olives, and some 
other trash, as merchandise for their Indian trades. But 
there was not found any treasure at all, or anything else of 
worth besides. 

The situation of Santiago is somewhat strange; in form 
like a triangle, having on the east and west sides two moun- 
tains of rock and cliff, as it were hanging over it; upon the 
top of which two mountains were builded certain fortifica- 
tions to preserve the town from any harm that might be 
offered, as in a plot is plainly shewed. From thence on the 
south side of the town is the main sea ; and on the north side, 

' Musketeers. 


the A^alley lying between the aforesaid mountains, wherein 
the town standeth. The said valley and town both do* grow 
very narrow; insomuch that the space between the two 
cliffs of this end of the town is estimated not to be above 
ten or twelve score [yards] over. In the midst of the valley 
Cometh down a riveret, rill, or brook of fresh water, which 
hard by the seaside maketh a pond or pool, whereout our 
ships were watered with very great ease and pleasure. 
Somewhat above the town on the north side, between the 
two mountains, the valley waxeth somewhat larger than at 
the town's end; which valley is wholly converted into gar- 
dens and orchards, well replenished with divers sorts of 
fruits, herbs, and trees, as lemons, oranges, sugar-canes, 
cocars or cocos nuts, plantains, potato-roots, cucumbers, 
small and round onions, garlic, and some other things not 
now remembered. Amongst which the cocos nuts and plan- 
tains are very pleasant fruits; the said cocos hath a hard 
shell and a green husk over it as hath our walnut, but it far 
exceedeth in greatness, for this cocos in his green husk is 
bigger than any man's two fists. Of the hard shell many 
drinking cups are made here in England, and set in silver as 
I have often seen. Next within this hard shell is a white 
rind resembling in show very much, even as any thing may 
do, to the white of an ^.gg when it is hard boiled. And 
within this white of the nut lieth a water, which is whitish 
and very clear, to the quantity of half a pint or thereabouts; 
which water and white rind before spoken of are both of a 
very cool fresh taste, and as pleasing as anything may be. 
I have heard some hold opinion that it is very restorative. 
The plantain groweth in cods, somewhat like to beans, but 
is bigger and longer, and much more thick together on the 
stalk; and when it waxeth ripe, the meat which filleth the 
rind of the cod becometh yellow, and is exceeding sweet 
and pleasant. 

In this time of our being there happened to come a Por- 
tugal to the western fort, with a flag of truce. To whom 
Captain Sampson was sent with Captain Goring; who com- 
ing to the said messenger, he first asked them, What nation 
they were? they answered Englishmen. He then required 
to know if wars were between England and Spain; to which 


they answered, that they knew not, but if he would go to 
their General he could best resolve hint of such particulars. 
And for his assurance of passage and repassage these 
captains made offer to engage their credits, which he 
refused for that he was not sent from his governor. 
Then they told him if his governor did desire to take 
a course for the common benefit of the people and country 
his best way were to come and present himself unto our 
noble and merciful governor. Sir Francis Drake, whereby he 
might be assured to find favour, both for himself and the in- 
habitants. Otherwise within three days Λνε should march 
over the land, and consume with fire all inhabited places, and 
put to the sword all such living souls as we should chance 
upon. So thus much he took for the conclusion of his an- 
swer. And departing, he promised to return the next day; 
but we never heard more of him. 

Upon the 24. of November, the General, accompanied with 
the Lieutenant-General and 600 men, marched forth to a 
village twelve miles within the land, called Saint Domingo, 
where the governor and the bishop, with all the better sort, 
Λvere lodged; and by eight of the clock we came to it, finding 
the place abandoned, and the people fled into the mountains. 
So we made stand a while to ease ourselves, and partly to 
see if any would come to speak to us. After we had well 
rested ourselves, the General commanded the troops to march 
away homewards. In which retreat the enemy shewed them- 
selves, both horse and foot, though not such force as durst 
encounter us ; and so in passing some time at the gaze with 
them, it waxed late and towards night before we could re- 
cover home to Santiago. 

On Monday, the 26. of November, the General commanded 
all the pinnaces with the boats to use all diligence to embark 
the army into such ships as every man belonged. The 
Lieutenant-General in like sort commanded Captain Goring 
and Lieutenant Tucker, with one hundred shot, to make a 
stand in the marketplace until our forces were wholly em- 
barked; the Vice- Admiral making stay with his pinnace 
and certain boats in the harbour, to bring the said last com- 
pany aboard the ships. Also the General willed forthwith 
the galley with two pinnaces to take into them the com.pany 


of Captain Barton, and the company of Captain Biggs, under 
the leading of Captain Sampson, to seek out such munition 
as was hidden in the ground, at the town of Pray a, or Play a, 
having been promised to be shewed it by a prisoner which 
was taken the day before. 

The captains aforesaid coming to the Playa, landed their 
men ; and having placed the troop in their best strength, 
Captain Sampson took the prisoner, and willed him to show 
that he had promised. The which he could not, or at least 
would not ; but they searching all suspected places, found two 
pieces of ordnance, one of iron, another of brass. In the 
afternoon the General anchored with the rest of the fleet 
before the Playa, coming himself ashore, willing us to burn 
the town and make all haste aboard ; the which was done by 
six of the clock the same day, and ourselves embarked again 
the same night. And so we put off to sea south-west. 

But before our departure from the town of Santiago, we 
established orders for the better government of the army. 
Every man mustered to his captain, and oaths were minis- 
tered, to acknowledge her Majesty supreme Governor, as 
also every man to do his uttermost endeavour to advance the 
service of the action, and to yield due obedience unto the 
directions of the General and his officers. By this provident 
counsel, and laying down this good foundation beforehand, 
all things went forward in a due course, to the achieving of 
our happy enterprise. 

In all the time of our being here, neither the governor for 
the said King of Spain, which is a Portugal, neither the 
bishop, whose authority is great, neither the inhabitants of 
the town, or island, ever came at us ; which we expected 
they should have done, to entreat us to leave them some part 
of their needful provisions, or at the least to spare the ruining 
of their town at our going away. The cause of this their 
unreasonable distrust, as I do take it, was the fresh remem- 
brance of the great wrongs that they had done to old Master 
William Hawkins, of Plymouth, in the voyage he made four 
or five years before, whenas they did both break their prom- 
ise, and murdered many of his men; whereof I judge you 
have understood, and therefore it is needless to be repeated. 
But since they came not at us, we left written in sundry 


places, as also in the Spital House (which building was only 
appointed to be spared), the great discontentment and scorn 
we took at this their refraining to come unto us, as also at 
the rude manner of killing, and savage kind of handling the 
dead body of one of our boys found by them straggling all 
alone, from whom they had taken his head and heart, and 
had straggled the other bowels about the place, in a most 
brutish and beastly manner. In revenge whereof at our de- 
parting we consumed with fire all the houses, as well in the 
country which we saw, as in the town of Santiago. 

From hence putting off to the West Indies, we were not 
many days at sea but there began among our people such 
mortality as in a few days there were dead above two or 
three hundred men. And until some seven or eight days 
after our coming from Santiago, there had not died any one 
man of sickness in all the fleet. The sickness showed not his 
infection, wherewith so many were strucken, until we were 
departed thence; and then seized our people with extreme 
hot burning and continual agues, whereof very few escaped 
with life, and yet those for the most part not without great 
alteration and decay of their wits and strength for a long 
time after. In some that died were plainly shown the 
small spots which are often found upon those that be in- 
fected with the plague. We Avere not above eighteen days 
in passage between the sight of Santiago aforesaid, and the 
island of Dominica, being the first island of the West Indies 
that we fell withal ; the same being inhabited with savage 
people, which go all naked, their skin coloured with some 
painting of a reddish tawny, very personable and handsome 
strong men, who do admit little conversation with the Span- 
iards; for, as some of our people might understand them, 
they had a Spaniard or twain prisoners with them. Neither 
do I think that there is any safety for any of our nation, 
or any other, to be within the limits of their commandment; 
albeit they used us very kindly for those few hours of time 
which we spent Avith them, helping our folks to fill and 
carry on their bare shoulders fresh water from the river to 
our ships' boats, and fetching from their houses great store 
of tobacco, as also a kind of bread which they fed on, called 
cassavi, very white and savoury, made of the roots of 


cassavi. In recompense whereof we bestowed liberal re- 
wards of glass, coloured beads, and other things, which we 
had found at Santiago; wherewith, as it seemed, they rested 
very greatly satisfied, and shewed some sorrowful counte- 
nance when they perceived that we would depart. 

From hence we went to another island westward of it, 
called Saint Christopher's Island; wherein we spent some 
days of Christmas, to refresh our sick people, and to cleanse 
and air our ships. In which island were not any people at 
all that we could hear of. 

In which time by the General it was advised and resolved, 
with the consent of the Lieutenant-General, the Vice- 
Admiral, and all the rest of the captains, to proceed to the 
great island of Hispaniola, as well for that we knew our- 
selves then to be in our best strength, as also the rather 
allured thereunto by the glorious fame of the city of St. 
Domingo, being the ancientest and chief inhabited place in 
all the tract of country thereabouts. And so proceeding in 
this determination, by the Λvay we met a small frigate, bound 
for the same place, the which the Vice- Admiral took; and 
having duly examined the men that were in her, there was 
one found by whom we were advertised the haven to be 
a barred haven, and the shore or land thereof to be well 
fortified, having a castle thereupon furnished with great 
store of artillery, without the danger whereof was no con- 
venient landing-place within ten English miles of the city, 
to which the said pilot took upon him to conduct us. 

All things being thus considered on, the whole forces 
were commanded in the evening to embark themselves in 
pinnaces, boats, and other small barks appointed for this 
service. Our soldiers being thus embarked, the General put 
himself into the bark Francis as Admiral ; and all this night 
we lay on the sea, bearing small sail until our arrival to the 
landing-place, which Avas about the breaking of the day. 
And so we landed, being New Year's Day, nine or ten miles 
to the westwards of that brave city of St. Domingo; for at 
that time nor yet is known to us any landing-place, where 
the sea-surge doth not threaten to overset a pinnace or boat. 
Our General having seen us all landed in safety, returned to 
his fleet, bequeathing us to God, and the good conduct of 


Master Carlile, our Lieutenant-General ; at whicH time, being 
about eight of the clock, we began to march. And about 
noon-time, or towards one of the clock, we approached the 
town; where the gentlemen and those of the better sort, 
being some hundred and fifty brave horses, or rather more, 
began to present themselves. But our small shot played 
upon them, which were so sustained with good proportion 
of pikes in all parts, as they finding no part of our troop 
unprepared to receive them (for you must understand they 
viewed all round about) they were thus driven to give us 
leave to proceed towards the two gates of the town which 
were the next to the seaward. They had manned them both, 
and planted their ordnance for that present and sudden alarm 
without the gate, and also some troops of small shot in 
ambuscado upon the highway side. We divided our whole 
force, being some thousand or twelve hundred men, into 
two parts, to enterprise both the gates at one instant; the 
Lieutenant-General having openly vowed to Captain Pozvell, 
who led the troop that entered the other gate, that with God's 
good favour he VvOuld not rest until our meeting in the 

Their ordnance had no sooner discharged upon our near 
approach, and made some execution amongst us, though 
not much, but the Lieutenant-General began forthwith to 
advance both his voice of encouragement and pace of march- 
ing; the first man that was slain with the ordnance being 
very near unto himself; and thereupon hasted all that he 
might, to keep them from the recharging of the ordnance. 
And notwithstanding their amhuscados, we marched or 
rather ran so roundly into them, as pell-mell we entered the 
gates, and gave them more care every man to save himself 
by flight, than reason to stand any longer to their broken 
fight. We forthwith repaired to the market-place, but to be 
more truly understood, a place of very spacious square 
ground; whither also came, as had been agreed, Captain 
Powell with the other troop. Which place with some 
part next unto it, we strengthened with harricados, and 
there as the most convenient place assured ourselves, the 
city being far too spacious for so small and weary a troop 
to undertake to guard. Somewhat after midnight, they who 


had the guard of the castle, hearing us busy about the gates 
of the said castle, abandoned the same; some being taken 
prisoners, and some fleeing away by the help of boats to the 
other side of the haven, and so into the country. 

The next day we quartered a little more at large, but 
not into the half part of the town; and so making substantial 
trenches, and planting all the ordnance, that each part was cor- 
respondent to other, we held this town the space of one month. 

In the which time happened some accidents, more than 
are well remembered for the present. But amongst other 
things, it chanced that the General sent on his message to 
the Spaniards a negro boy with a flag of white, signifying 
truce, as is the Spanish ordinary manner to do there, when 
they approach to speak to us; which boy unhappily was 
first met withal by some of those who had been belonging 
as officers for the king in the Spanish galley, which with the 
town was lately fallen into our hands. Who, without all 
order or reason, and contrary to that good usage wherewith 
we had entertained their messengers, furiously struck the 
poor boy through the body with one of their horsemen's 
staves; with which wound the boy returned to the General, 
and after he had declared the manner of this wrongful 
cruelty, died forthwith in his presence. Wherewith the 
General being greatly passioned, commanded the provost- 
marshal to cause a couple of friars, then prisoners, to be 
carried to the same place where the boy was strucken, ac- 
companied with sufficient guard of our soldiers, and there 
presently to be hanged, despatching at the same instant an- 
other poor prisoner, with this reason wherefore this execu- 
tion was done, and with this message further, that until 
the party who had thus murdered the General's messenger 
were delivered into our hands to receive condign punish- 
ment, there should no day pass wherein there should not two 
prisoners be hanged, until they were all consumed which were 
in our hands. Whereupon the day following, he that had 
been captain of the king's galley brought the offender to 
the town's end, ofifering to deliver him into our hands. But 
it was thought to be a more honourable revenge to make 
them there, in our sight, to perform the execution them- 
selves ; which was done accordingly. 


During our being in this town, as formerly also at San- 
tiago there had passed justice upon the life of one of our 
own company for an odious matter, so here likewise was 
there an Irishman hanged for the murdering of his corporal. 

In this time also passed many treaties between their com- 
missioners and us, for ransom of their city; but upon dis- 
agreements we still spent the early mornings in firing the 
outmost houses; but they being built very magnificently of 
stone, with high lofts, gave us no small travail to ruin them. 
And albeit for divers days together we ordained each morn- 
ing by daybreak, until the heat began at nine of the clock, 
that two hundred mariners did naught else but labour to 
fire and burn the said houses without our trenches, whilst 
the soldiers in a like proportion stood forth for their guard; 
yet did we not, or could not in this time consume so much 
as one-third part of the town, which town is plainly described 
and set forth in a certain map. And so in the end, what 
wearied with firing, and what hastened by some other 
respects, we were contented to accept of 25,000 ducats of 
five shillings six-pence the piece, for the ransom of the 
rest of the town. 

Amongst other things which happened and were found 
at St. Domingo, I may not omit to let the world know one 
very notable mark and token of the unsatiable ambition of 
the Spanish king and his nation, which was found in the 
king's house, wherein the chief governor of that city and 
country is appointed always to lodge, which was this. In 
the coming to the hall or other rooms of this house, you 
must first ascend up by a fair large pair of stairs, at the 
head of which stairs is a handsome spacious place to walk 
in, somewhat like unto a gallery. Wherein, upon one of 
the walls, right over against you as you enter the said place, 
so as your eye cannot escape the sight of it, there is described 
and painted in a very large scutcheon the arms of the King 
of Spain; and in the lower part of the said scutcheon their 
is likewise described a globe, containing in it the whole cir- 
cuit of the sea and the earth, whereupon is a horse stand- 
ing on his hinder part within the globe, and the other fore- 
part without the globe, lifted up as it were to leap, with a 
scroll painted in his mouth, wherein was written these 


words in Latin, Non sufficit orbis, which is as much to say 
as, The world sufficeth not. Whereof the meaning was re- 
quired to be known of some of those of the better sort that 
came in commission to treat upon the ransom of the town; 
who would shake their heads and turn aside their 
countenance, in some smiling sort, without answering any- 
thing, as greatly ashamed thereof. For by some of our 
company it was told them, that if the Queen of England 
would resolutely prosecute the wars against the King of 
Spain, he should be forced to lay aside that proud and un- 
reasonable reaching vein of his; for he should find more 
than enough to do to keep that which he had already, as 
by the present example of their lost town they might for 
a beginning perceive well enough. 

Now to the satisfying of some men, who marvel greatly 
that such a famous and goodly-builded city, so well inhabited 
of gallant people, very brave in their apparel (whereof our 
soldiers found good store for their relief), should afford no 
greater riches than was found there. Herein it is to be 
understood that the Indian people, which were the natives of 
this whole island of Hispaniola (the same being near hand 
as great as England), were many years since clean con- 
sumed by the tyranny of the Spaniards; which was the 
cause that, for lack of people to work in the mines, the 
gold and silver mines of this island are wholly given over. 
And thereby they are fain in this island to use copper money, 
whereof was found very great quantity. The chief trade 
of this place consisteth of sugar and ginger, which groweth 
in the island, and of hides of oxen and kine, Avhich in this 
waste country of the island are bred in infinite numbers, the 
soil being very fertile. And the said beasts are fed up to a 
very large growth, and so killed for nothing so much as 
for their hides aforesaid. We found here great store of 
strong wine, sweet oil, vinegar, olives, and other such-like 
provisions, as excellent wheat-meal packed up in wine-pipes 
and other cask, and other commodities likewise, as woollen 
and linen cloth and some silks; all which provisions are 
brought out of Spain, and served us for great relief. There 
was but a little plate or vessel of silver, in comparison of 
the great pride in other things of this town, because in these 


hot countries they use much of those earthen dishes finely 
painted or varnished, which they call porcellana, which is 
had out of the East India; and for their drinking they use 
glasses altogether, whereof they make excellent good and fair 
in the same place. But yet some plate we found, and many 
other good things, as their household garniture, very gallant 
and rich, which had cost them dear, although unto us they 
were of small importance. 

From St. Domingo we put over to the main or firm land, 
and, going all along the coast, we came at last in sight of 
Carthagena, standing upon the seaside, so near as some of 
our barks in passing alongst approached within the reach 
of their culverin shot, which they had planted upon certain 
platforms. The harbour-mouth lay some three miles toward 
the westward of the town, whereinto we entered at about 
three or four of the clock in the afternoon without any 
resistance of ordnance or other impeachment planted upon 
the same. In the evening we put ourselves on land towards 
the harbour-mouth, under the leading of Master Carlile, 
our Lieutenant-General. Who, after he had digested us to 
march forward about midnight, as easily as foot might fall, 
expressly commanded us to keep close by the sea-wash of 
the shore for our best and surest way; whereby we were 
like to go through, and not to miss any more of the way, 
which once we had lost within an hour after our first 
beginning to march, through the slender knowledge of him 
that took upon him to be our guide, whereby the night spent 
on, which otherwise must have been done by resting. But 
as we came within some two miles of the town, their horse- 
men, which were some hundred, met us, and, taking the 
alarm, retired to their townward again upon the first volley 
of our shot that was given them; for the place where we 
encountered being woody and bushy, even to the water- 
side, was unmeet for their service. 

At this instant we might hear some pieces of artillery dis- 
charged, with divers small shot, towards the harbour; which 
gave us to understand, according to the order set down 
in the evening before by our General, that the Vice-Admiral, 
accompanied with Captain Venner, Captain White, and 
Captain Cross, with other sea captains, and with divers 


pinnaces and boats, should give some attempt unto the little 
fort standing on the entry of the inner haven, near adjoin- 
ing to the town, though to small purpose, for that the place 
was strong, and the entry, very narrow, was chained over; 
so as there could be nothing gotten by the attempt more than 
the giving of them an alarm on that other side of the haven, 
being a mile and a-half from the place we now were at. In 
which attempt the Vice- Admiral had the rudder of his skiff 
strucken through with a saker' shot, and a little or no harm 
received elsewhere. 

The troops being now in their march, half-a-mile behither 
the town or less, the ground we were on grew to be strait, 
and not above nity paces over, having the main sea on the 
one side of it and the harbour-water or inner sea (as you 
may term it) on the other side, which in the plot is plainly 
shewed. This strait was fortified clean over with a stone 
wall and a ditch without it, the said wall being as orderly 
built, with flanking in every part, as can be set down. There 
was only so much of this strait unwalled as might serve for 
the issuing of the horsemen or the passing of carriage in time 
of need. But this unwalled part was not without a very 
good barricado of wine-butts or pipes, filled with earth, full 
and thick as they might stand on end one by another, some 
part of them standing even within the main sea. This place 
of strength was furnished with six great pieces, demicul- 
verins' and sakers, which shot directly in front upon us as 
we approached. Now without this wall, upon the inner side 
of the strait, they had brought likewise two great galleys 
with their prows to the shore, having planted in them 
eleven pieces of ordnance, which did beat all cross the 
strait, and flanked our coming on. In these two galleys 
were planted three or four hundred small shot, and on 
the land, in the guard only of this place, three hundred 
shot and pikes. 

They, in this their full readiness to receive us, spared not 
their shot both great and small. But our Lieutenant- 
General, taking the advantage of the dark (the daylight 
as yet not broken out) approached by the lowest ground, 
according to the express direction which himself had for- 

'Bore 3% inches, shot s lb. * Bore 4% inches, shot 9 lb. 


merly given, the same being the sea-wash shore, where the 
water was somewhat fallen, so as most of all their shot was 
in vain. Our Lieutenant-General commanded our shot to 
forbear shooting until we were come to the wall-side. And 
so with pikes roundly together we approached the place, 
where we soon found out the harricados of pipes or butts to 
be the meetest place for our assault; which, notwithstanding 
it was well furnished with pikes and shots, was without stay- 
ing attempted by us. Down went the butts of earth, and 
pell-mell came our swords and pikes together, after our 
shot had first given their volley, even at the enemy's nose. 
Our pikes were somewhat longer than theirs, and our bodies 
better armed; for very few of them were armed. With 
which advantage our swords and pikes grew too hard for 
them, and they driven to give place. In this furious entry 
the Lieutenant-General slew with his own hands the chief 
ensign-bearer of the Spaniards, who fought very manfully 
to his life's end. 

We followed into the town with them, and, giving them 
no leisure to breathe, we won the market-place, albeit they 
made head and fought awhile before we got it. And so we 
being once seized and assured of that, they were content 
to suffer us to lodge Avithin their town, and themselves to 
go to their wives, whom they had carried into other places 
of the country before our coming thither. At every street's 
end they had raised very fine harricados of earth- works, 
with trenches without them, as well made as ever we saw 
any work done; at the entering whereof was some little 
resistance, but soon overcome it was, with few slain or hurt. 
They had joined with them many Indians, whom they had 
placed in corners of advantage, all bowmen, with their 
arrows most villainously empoisoned, so as if they did but 
break the skin, the party so touched died without great mar- 
vel. Some they sIcav of our people with their arrows; some 
they likewise mischief ed to death with certain pricks of small 
sticks sharply pointed, of a foot and a-half long, the one 
end put into the ground, the other empoisoned, sticking fast 
up, right against our coming in the way as we should ap- 
proach from our landing towards the town, whereof they 
had planted a wonderful number in the ordinary way; but 


our keeping the sea-wash shore missed the greatest part 
of them very happily. 

I overpass many particular matters, as the hurting of 
Captain Sampson at sword blows in the first entering, unto 
whom was committed the charge of the pikes of the vant- 
guard by his lot and turn; as also of the taking of Alonzo 
Bravo, the chief commander of that place, by Captain 
Goring, after the said captain had first hurt him with his 
sword; unto w^hich captain was committed the charge of the 
shot of the said vant-guard. Captain Winter was likewise 
by his turn of the vant-guard in this attempt, where also 
the Lieutenant-General marched himself; the said Captain 
Winter, through a great desire to serve by land, having 
now exchanged his charge at sea with Captain Cecil for 
his band of footmen. Captain Pozuell, the Sergeant-Major, 
had by his turn the charge of the four companies which made 
the battle. Captain Morgan, who at St. Domingo was of the 
vant-guard, had now by turn his charge upon the companies 
of the rearward. Every man, as well of one part as of an- 
other, came so willingly on to the service, as the enemy was 
not able to endure the fury of such hot assault. 

We stayed here six weeks, and the sickness with mortality 
before spoken of still continued among us, though not with 
the same fury as at the first ; and such as were touched with 
the said sickness, escaping death, very few or almost none 
could recover their strength. Yea, many of them were much 
decayed in their memory, insomuch that it was grown an 
ordinary judgment, when one was heard to speak foolishly, 
to say he had been sick of the calentura, which is the Spanish 
name of their burning ague; for, as I told you before, it is a 
very burning and pestilent ague. The original cause thereof 
is imputed to the evening or first night air, which they term 
la Serena; wherein they say and hold very firm opinion 
that whoso is then abroad in the open air shall certainly 
be infected to the death, not being of the Indian or natural 
race of those country people. By holding their watch our 
men were thus subjected to the infectious air, which at 
Santiago was most dangerous and deadly of all other places. 

With the inconvenience of continual mortalit)'• we were 
forced to give over our intended enterprise to go with 


Nombre de Dios, and so overland to Panama, where we 
should have strucken the stroke for the treasure, and full 
recompense of our tedious travails. And thus at Carthagena 
we took our first resolution to return homewards, the form 
of which resolution I thought good here to put down under 
the principal captains' hands as followeth: — 

A Resolution of the Land-Captains, what course they think most 
expedient to be taken. Given at Carthagena, the 27. of Feb- 
ruary, 1585. 

WHEREAS it hath pleased the General to demand the opinions 
of his captains what course they think most expedient to be now 
undertaken, the land-captains being assembled by themselves to- 
gether, and having advised hereupon, do in three points deliver ^ 
the same. 

THE FIRST, touching the keeping of the town against the force 
of the enemy, either that which is present, or that which may come 
out of Spain, is answered thus : — 

* We hold opinion, that with this troop of men which we have 
presently with us in land service, being victualled and munitioned, 
we may well keep the town, albeit that of men able to answer present 
service we have not above 700. The residue, being some 150 men, 
by reason of their hurts and sickness, are altogether unable to stand 
us in any stead : wherefore hereupon the sea-captains are likewise 
to give their resolution, how they will tindertake the safety and 
service of the ships upon the arrival of any Spanish fleet.' 

THE SECOND point we make to be this, whether it be meet to go 
presently homeward, or else to continue further trial of our fortune 
in undertaking such like enterprises as we have done already, and 
thereby to seek after that bountiful mass of treasure for recom- ' 
pense of our travails, which was generally expected at our coming 
forth of England: wherein we answer: — 

That it is well known how both we and the soldiers are en- 
tered into this action as voluntary men, without any impress or gage 
from her Majesty or anybody else. And forasmuch as we have 
hitherto discharged the parts of honest men, so that now by the 
great blessing and favour of our good God there have been taken 
three such notable towns, wherein by the estimation of all men 
would have been found some very great treasures, knowing that 
Santiago was the chief city of all the islands and traffics thereabouts, 
St. Domingo the chief city of Hispaniola, and the head government 
not only of that island, but also of Cuba, and of all the islands about 
it, as also of such inhabitations of the firm land, as were next unto 
it, and a place that is both magnificently built and entertaineth great 
trades of merchandise ; and now lastly the city of Carthagena. which 
cannot be denied to be one of the chief places of most especial im- 

HC— Vol. 33 (9) 


portance to the Spaniard of all the cities which be on this side of 
the West India: we do therefore consider, that since all these cities, 
with their goods and prisoners taken in them, and the ransoms of 
the said aides, being all put together, are found far short to satisfy 
that expectation which by the generality of the enterprisers was first 
conceived ; and being further advised of the slenderness of our 
strength, whereunto v/e be now reduced, as well in respect of the small 
number of able bodies, as also not a little in regard of the slack dis- 
position of the greater part of those which remain, very many of the 
better minds and men being either consumed by death or weakened 
by sickness and hurts ; and lastly, since that as yet there is not laid 
down to our knowledge any such enterprise as may seem convenient 
to be undertaken with such few as we are presently able to make, 
and withal of such certain likelihood, as with God's good success 
which it may please him to bestow upon us, the same may promise 
to yield us any sufficient contentment : we do therefore conclude 
hereupon, that it is better to hold sure as we may the honour already 
gotten, and with the same to return towards our gracious sovereign 
and country, from whence, if it shall please her Majesty to set 
us forth again with her orderly means and entertainment, we are 
most ready and willing to go through with anything that the utter- 
most of our strength and endeavour shall be able to reach unto. But 
therewithal we do advise and protest that it is far from our thoughts, 
either to refuse, or so much as to seem to be weary of anything, 
which for the present shall be further required or directed to be done 
by us from our General.' 

THE THIRD and last point is concerning the ransom of this city 
of Carthagena, for the which, before it was touched with any fire, 
there was made an offer of some £27,000 or £28,000 sterling: — 

' Thus much we utter herein as our opinions, agreeing, so it be 
done in good sort, to accept this offer aforesaid, rather than to break 
off by standing still upon our demands of £100,000; which seems a 
matter impossible to be performed for the present by them. And to 
say truth, we may now with much honour and reputation better be 
satisfied with that sum offered by them at the first, if they will now 
be contented to give it, than we might at that time with a great 
deal more ; inasmuch as we have taken our full pleasure, both in the 
uttermost sacking and spoiling of all their household goods and mer- 
chandise, as also in that we have consumed and ruined a great part 
of their town with fire. And thus much further is considered herein 
by us ; that as there be in the voyage a great many poor men, who 
have willingly adventured their lives and travails, and divers amongst 
them having spent their apparel and such other little provisions as 
their small means might have given them leave to prepare, which 
being done upon such good and allowable intention as this action 
hath always carried with it (meaning, against the Spaniard, our 
greatest and most dangerous enemy), so surely we cannot but have 
an inward regard, so far as may lie in us, to help them in all good 
sort towards the satisfaction of this their expectation; and by 


procuring them some little benefit to encourage them, and to nourish 
this ready and willing disposition of theirs, both in them and in 
others by their example, against any other time of like occasion. 
But because it may be supposed that herein we forget not the 
private benefit of ourselves, and are thereby the rather moved to 
incline ourselves to this composition, we do therefore think good 
for the clearing ourselves of all such suspicion, to declare hereby, that 
what part or portion soever it be of this ransom or composition 
for Carthagena which should come unto us, we do freely give and 
bestow the same wholly upon the poor men who have remained with 
us in the voyage (meaning as well the sailor as the soldier), wishing 
with all our hearts it were such or so much as might see a suffi- 
cient reward for their painful endeavour. And for the firm con- 
firmation thereof, we have thought meet to subsign these presents 
with our own hands in the place and time aforesaid. 

' Captain Christopher Carlile, Lieutenant-General ; Captain Goring, 
Captain Sampson, Captain Powell, &c. 

But while we were yet there, it happened one day that 
our watch called the sentinel, upon the church-steeple, had 
discovered in the sea a couple of small barks or boats, 
making in with the harbour of Carthagena. Whereupon 
Captain Moon and Captain Varney, with John Grant, the 
master of the Tiger, and some other seamen, embarked 
themselves in a couple of small pinnaces, to take them before 
they should come nigh the shore, at the mouth of the har- 
bour, lest by some straggling Spaniards from the land, they 
might be warned by signs from coming in. Which fell out 
accordingly, notwithstanding all the diligence that our men 
could use: for the Spanish boats, upon the sight of our 
pinnaces coming towards them, ran themselves ashore, and 
so their men presently hid themselves in bushes hard by the 
sea-side, amongst some others that had called them by signs 
thither. Our men presently without any due regard had to 
the quality of the place, and seeing no man of the Spaniards 
to shew themselves, boarded the Spanish barks or boats, and 
so standing all open in them, were suddenly shot at by a 
troop of Spaniards out of the bushes; by which volley of 
shot there were slain Captain Varney, which died presently, 
and Captain Moon, who died some few days after, besides 
some four or five others that were hurt: and so our folks 
returned without their purpose, not having any sufficient 
number of soldiers with them to fight on shore. For those 
men they carried were all mariners to row, few of them 


armed, because they made account with their ordnance to 
have taken the barks well enough at sea; which they might 
full easily have done, without any loss at all, if they had 
come in time to the harbour mouth, before the Spaniards' 
boats had gotten so near the shore. 

During our abode in this place, as also at St. Domingo, 
there passed divers courtesies between us and the Spaniards, 
as feasting, and using them with all kindness and favour; so 
as amongst others there came to see the General the gov- 
ernor of Carthagena, with the bishop of the same, and divers 
other gentlemen of the better sort. This town of Carthagena 
we touched in the out parts, and consumed much with fire, 
as we had done St. Domingo, upon discontentments, and for 
want of agreeing with us in their first treaties touching 
their ransom; which at the last was concluded between us 
should be 1 10,000 ducats for that which was yet standing, 
the ducat valued at five shillings sixpence sterling. 

This town, though not half so big as St. Domingo, gives, 
as you see, a far greater ransom, being in very deed of far 
more importance, by reason of the excellency of the harbour, 
and the situation thereof to serve the trade of Ν ombre de 
Dios and other places, and is inhabited with far more richer 
merchants. The other is chiefly inhabited with lawyers and 
brave gentlemen, being the chief or highest appeal of their 
suits in law of all the islands about it and of the mainland 
coast next unto it. And it is of no such account as Cartha- 
gena, for these and some like reasons which I could give 
you, over long to be now written. 

The warning which this town received of our coming to- 
wards them from St. Domingo, by the space of 20 days be- 
fore our arrival here, was cause that they had both fortified 
and every way prepared for their best defence. As also 
that they had carried and conveyed away all their treasure 
and principal substance. 

The ransom of 110,000 ducats thus concluded on, as is 
aforesaid, the same being written, and expressing for 
nothing more than the town of Carthagena, upon the pay- 
ment of the said ransom we left the said town and drew 
some part of our soldiers into the priory or abbey, standing 
a quarter of an English mile below the town upon the har- 


bour water-side, the same being walled with a wall of stone ; 
which we told the Spaniards was yet ours, and not redeemed 
by their composition. Whereupon they, finding the defect 
of their contract, were contented to enter into another 
ransom for all places, but specially for the said house, as 
also the blockhouse or castle, which is upon the mouth 
of the inner harbour. And when we asked as much for 
the one as for the other, they yielded to give a thousand 
crowns for the abbey, leaving us to take our pleasure upon 
the blockhouse, which they said they were not able to ransom, 
having stretched themselves to the uttermost of their 
powers ; and therefore the said blockhouse was by us under- 
mined, and so with gunpowder blown up in pieces. While 
this latter contract was in making, our whole fleet of ships 
fell down towards the harbour-mouth, where they anchored 
the third time and employed their men in fetching of fresh 
water aboard the ships for our voyage homewards, which 
water was had in a great well that is in the island by the 
harbour-mouth. Which island is a very pleasant place as 
hath been seen, having in it many sorts of goodly and very 
pleasant fruits, as the orange-trees and others, being set 
orderly in walks of great length together. Insomuch as the 
whole island, being some two or three miles about, is cast 
into grounds of gardening and orchards. 

After six weeks' abode in this place, we put to sea the last 
of March ; where, after two or three days, a great ship 
which we had taken at St. Domingo, and thereupon was 
called The Nezv Year's Gift, fell into a great leak, being 
laden with ordnance, hides, and other spoils, and in the 
night she lost the company of our fleet. Which being missed 
the next morning by the General, he cast about with the 
whole fleet, fearing some great mischance to be happened 
unto her, as in very deed it so fell out ; for her leak was so 
great that her men were all tired with pumping. But at the 
last, having found her, and the bark Talbot in her company, 
which stayed by great hap with her, they were ready to 
take their men out of her for the saving of them. And so 
the General, being fully advertised of their great extremity, 
made sail directly back again to Carthagena with the whole 
fleet; where, having staid eight or ten days more about the 


unlading of this ship and the bestowing thereof and her 
men into other ships, we departed once again to sea, direct- 
ing our course toward the Cape St. Anthony, being the 
westermost part of Cuba, where we arrived the 27. of April. 
But because fresh water could not presently be found, we 
weighed anchor and departed, thinking in few days to re- 
cover the Matanzas, a place to the eastward of Havana. 

After we had sailed some fourteen days we were brought 
to Cape St. Anthony again through lack of favourable wind; 
but then our scarcity was grown such as need make us look 
a little better for water, which we found in sufficient quan- 
tity, being indeed, as I judge, none other than rain-water 
newly fallen and gathered up by making pits in a plot of 
marish ground some three hundred paces from the seaside. 

I do wrong if I should forget the good example of the 
General at this place, who, to encourage others, and to hasten 
the getting of fresh water aboard the ships, took no less 
pain himself than the meanest; as also at St. Domingo, 
Carthagena, and all other places, having always so vigilant 
a care and foresight in the good ordering of his fleet, ac- 
companying them, as it is said, with such wonderful travail 
of body, as doubtless had he been the meanest person, as 
he was the chiefest, he had yet deserved the first place of 
honour; and no less happy do wt account him for being 
associated with Master Carlile, his Liuetenant-General, by 
whose experience, prudent counsel, and gallant performance 
he achieved so many and happy enterprises of the war, by 
whom also he was very greatly assisted in setting down the 
needful orders, laws, and course of justice, and the due ad- 
ministration of the same upon all occasions. 

After three days spent in watering our ships, we departed 
now the second time from this Cape of St. Anthony the 
13. of IMay. And proceeding about the Cape of Florida, we 
ne\'^er touched anywhere; but coasting alongst Florida, and 
keeping the shore still in sight, the 28. of May, early in the 
morning, we descried on the shore a place built like a 
beacon, which was indeed a scaffold upon four long masts 
raised on end for men to discover to the sea\vard, being 
in the latitude of thirty degrees, or very near thereunto. 
Our pinnaces manned and coming to the shore, we marched 


Up alongst the river-side to see what place the enemy held 
there; for none amongst us had any knowledge thereof 
at all. 

Here the General took occasion to march with the com- 
panies himself in person, the Lieutenant-General ha\^ing the 
vant-guard ; and, going a mile up, or somewhat more, by the 
river-side, we might discern on the other side of the river 
over against us a fort which newly had been built by the 
Spaniards ; and some mile, or thereabout, above the fort was 
a little to\vn or village without walls, built of wooden houses, 
as the plot doth plainly shew. We forthwith prepared to 
have ordnance for the battery ; and one piece was a little 
before the evening planted, and the first shot being made by 
the Lieutenant-General himself at their ensign, strake 
through the ensign, as we afterv/ards understood by a 
Frenchman which came unto us from them. One shot more 
was then made, which struck the foot of the fort wall, which 
was all massive timber of great trees like masts. The 
Lieutenant-General was determined to pass the river this 
night with four companies, and there to lodge himself en- 
trenched as near the fort as that he might play with his 
muskets and smallest shot upon any that should appear, and 
so afterwards to bring and plant the battery with him; but 
the help of mariners for that sudden to make trenches could 
not be had, which was the cause that this determination 
was remitted until the next night. 

In the night the Lieutenant-General took a little rowing 
skifif and half a dozen well armed, as Captain Morgan and 
Captain Sampson, with some others, besides the rowers, and 
went to view what guard the enemy kept, as also to take 
knowledge of the ground. And albeit he went as covertly 
as might be, yet the enemy, taking the alarm, grew fearful 
that the whole force was approaching to the assault, and 
therefore with all speed abandoned the place after the shoot- 
ing of some of their pieces. They thus gone, and he being 
returned unto us again, but nothing knowing of their flight 
from their fort, forthAvith came a Frenchman,* being a fifer 
(who had been prisoner with them) in a little boat, playing 

• Nicolas Borgoignon. The ' Prince of Orange's Song ' was a popular 
ditty in praise of William Prince of Orange (assassinated 1584), the leader 
of the Dutch Protestant insurgents. 


on his fife the tune of the Prince of Orange his song. And 
being called unto by the guard, he told them before he 
put foot out of the boat what he was himself, and how the 
Spaniards were gone from the fort ; offering either to re- 
main in hands there, or else to return to the place with them 
that would go. 

Upon this intelligence the General, the Lieutenant-Gen- 
eral, with some of the captains in one skiff and the Vice- 
Admiral with some others in his skiff, and two or three 
pinnaces furnished of soldiers with them, put presently over 
towards the fort, giving order for the rest of the pinnaces 
to follow. And in our approach some of the enemy, bolder 
than the rest, having stayed behind their company, shot off 
two pieces of ordnance at us ; but on shore we went, and 
entered the place without finding any man there. 

When the day appeared, we found it built all of timber, 
the walls being none other than whole masts or bodies of 
trees set upright and close together in manner of a pale, 
without any ditch as yet made, but wholly intended with 
some more time. For they had not as yet finished all their 
work, having begun the same some three or four months 
before; so as, to say the truth, they had no reason to keep 
it, being subject both to fire and easy assault. 

The platform whereon the ordnance lay was whole bodies 
of long pine-trees, whereof there is great plenty, laid across 
one on another and some little earth amongst. There were in 
it thirteen or fourteen great pieces of brass ordnance and a 
chest unbroken up, having in it the value of some two 
thousand pounds sterling, by estimation, of the king's 
treasure, to pay the soldiers of that place, who were a 
hundred and fifty men. 

The fort thus won, which they called St. John's Fort, and 
the day opened, we assayed to go to the town, but could not 
by reason of some rivers and broken ground which was be- 
tween the two places. And therefore being enforced to 
embark again into our pinnaces, we went thither upon the 
great main river, which is called, as also the town, by the 
name of St. Augustine. At our approaching to land, there 
were some that began to shew themselves, and to bestow 
some few shot upon us, but presently withdrew themselves. 


And in their running thus away, the Sergeant-Major finding 
one of their horses ready saddled and bridled, took the same 
to follow the chase ; and so overgoing all his company, was 
by one laid behind a bush shot through the head ; and falling 
down therewith, was by the same and two or three more, 
stabbed in three or four places of his body with swords and 
daggers, before any could come near to his rescue. His 
death was much lamented, being in very deed an honest 
wise gentleman, and soldier of good experience, and of as 
great courage as any man might be. 

In this place called St. Augustine we understood the king 
did keep, as is before said, 150 soldiers, and at another place 
some dozen leagues beyond to the northwards, called St. 
Helena, he did there likewise keep 150 more, serving there 
for no other purpose than to keep all other nations from in- 
habiting any part of all that coast; the government whereof 
was committed to one Pedro Melendez, marquis, nephew to 
that Melendes the Admiral, who had overthrown Master 
John Hawkins in the Bay of Mexico some 17 or 18 years 
ago. This governor had charge of both places, but was at 
this time in this place, and one of the first that left the 

Here it was resolved in full assembly of captains, to un- 
dertake the enterprise of St. Helena, and from thence to 
seek out the inhabitation of our English countrymen in Vir- 
ginia, distant from thence some six degrees northward. 
When we came thwart of St. Helena, the shoals appearing 
dangerous, and we having no pilot to undertake the entry, 
it was thought meetest to go hence alongst. For the Ad- 
miral had been the same night in four fathom and a half, 
three leagues from the shore; and yet we understood, by 
the help of a known pilot, there may and do go in ships of 
greater burden and draught than any we had in our fleet. 
We passed thus along the coast hard aboard the shore, which 
is shallow for a league or two from the shore, and the same 
is low and broken land for the most part. The ninth of 
June upon sight of one special great fire (which are very 
ordinary all alongst this coast, even from the Cape of 
Florida hither) the General sent his skiff to the shore, where 
they found some of our English countrymen that had been 


sent thither the year before by Sir Walter Raleigh, and 
brought them aboard ; by whose direction we proceeded 
along to the place which they make their port. But some 
of our ships being of great draught, unable to enter, an- 
chored without the harbour in a wild road at sea, about two 
miles from shore. From whence the General wrote letters 
to Master Ralph Lane, being governor of those English in 
Virginia, and then at his fort about six leagues from the 
road in an island which they called Roanoac; wherein 
especially he shewed how ready he was to supply his neces- 
sities and wants, which he understood of by those he had 
first talked withal. 

The morrow after, Master Lane himself and some of his 
company coming unto him, with the consent of his captains 
he gave them the choice of two offers, that is to say: either 
he would leave a ship, a pinnace, and certain boats with 
sufficient masters and mariners, together furnished with a 
month's victual, to stay and make further discovery of the 
country and coasts, and so much victual likewise as might 
be sufficient for the bringing of them all (being an hundred 
and three persons) into England, if they thought good after 
such time, with any other thing they would desire, and that 
he might be able to spare: or else, if they thought they had 
made sufficient discovery already, and did desire to return 
into England, he wOuld give them passage. But they, as it 
seemed, being desirous to stay, accepted very thankfully and 
with great gladness that which was offered first. Where- 
upon the ship being appointed and received into charge by 
some of their own company sent into her by Master Lane, 
before they had received from the rest of the fleet the pro- 
vision appointed them, there arose a great storm (which 
they said was extraordinary and very strange) that lasted 
three days together, and put all our fleet in great danger to 
be driven from their anchoring upon the coast ; for we brake 
many cables, and lost many anchors; and some of our fleet 
which had lost all, of which number was the ship appointed 
for Master Lane and his company, were driven to put to sea 
in great danger, in avoiding the coast, and could never see 
us again until we met in England. Many also of our small 
pinnaces and boats were lost in this storm. 


Notwithstanding, after all this, the General offered them, 
with consent of his captains, another ship with some pro- 
visions, although not such a one for their turns as might 
have been spared them before, this being unable to be 
brought into their harbour: or else, if they would, to give 
them passage into England, although he knew he should per- 
form it with greater difficulty than he might have done be- 
fore. But Master Lane, with those of the chiefest of his 
company which he had then with him, considering Λvhat 
should be best for them to do, made request imto the Gen- 
eral under their hands, that they might have passage for 
England: the which being granted, and the rest sent for out 
of the country and shipped, we departed from that coast 
the i8. of June. And so, God be thanked, both they and 
we in good safety arrived at Portsmouth the 28. of July, 
1586, to the great glory of God, and to no small honour to 
our Prince, our country, and ourselves. The total value of 
that which was got in this voyage is esteemed at three score 
thousand pounds, whereof the companies which have trav- 
ailed in the voyage were to haA^e twenty thousand pounds, 
the adventurers the other forty. Of which twenty thousand 
pounds (as I can judge) Λνίΐΐ redound some six pounds to 
the single share. We lost some 750 men in the voyage ; 
above three parts of them only by sickness. The men of 
name that died and were slain in this voyage, which I can 
presently call to remembrance, are these : — Captain Powell, 
Captain Varney, Captain Moon, Captain Fortescue, Captain 
Biggs, Captain Cecil, Captain Hannam, Captain Greenfield; 
Thomas Tucker, a lieutenant; Alexander Starkey, a lieu- 
tenant; ]\Iaster Escot, a lieutenant; Master Waterhouse, 
a lieutenant; Master George Candish, Master Nicholas 
Winter, Master Alexander Carlile, Master Robert Alexander, 
Master Scroope, Master James Dyer, Master Peter Duke. 
With some other, whom for haste I cannot suddenly 
think on. 

The ordnance gotten of all sorts, brass and iron, were 
about two hundred and forty pieces, whereof the two hun- 
dred and some more were brass, and were thus found and 
gotten: — At Santiago some two or three and fifty pieces. 
In St. Domingo about four score, whereof was very much 


great ordnance, as whole cannon," demi-cannon, culverins, 
and such like. In Carthagena some sixty and three pieces, 
and good store likewise of the greater sort. In the Fort of 
St. Augustine were fourteen pieces. The rest was iron ord- 
nance, of which the most part was gotten at St. Domingo, 
the rest at Carthagena. 

^" The ' whole cannon ' had a bore of 8 inches, and carried a shot of 
60 tb; the 'demi-cannon' 6 Mi inches, shot 30 lb ; the culverin 5% inches, 
shot 18 tb. 




Sir Humphrey Gilbert, the founder of the first English colony 
in North America, was born about 1539, the son of a Devonshire 
gentleman, whose widow afterward married the father of Sir 
Walter Raleigh. He was educated at Eton and Oxford, served 
under Sir Philip Sidney's father in Ireland, and fought for the 
Netherlands against Spain. After his return he composed a 
pamphlet urging the search for a northwest passage to Cathay, 
which led to Frobisher's license for his explorations to that end. 

In 1578 Gilbert obtained from Queen Elizabeth the charter he 
had long sought, to plant a colony in North America. His first 
attempt failed, and cost him his whole fortune; but, after further 
service in Ireland, he sailed again in 1583 for Newfoundland. In 
the August of that year he took possession of the harbor of St. 
John and founded his colony, hut on the return voyage he went 
down with his ship in a storm south of the Azores. 

The following narrative is an account of this last voyage of 
Gilbert's, told by Edward Hayes, commander of "The Golden 
Hind," the only one to reach England of the three ships which 
set out from Newfoundland with Gilbert. 

The settlement at St. John was viezved by its promoter as 
merely the beginning of a scheme for ousting Spain from 
America in favor of England. The plan did not progress as 
he hoped; but after long delays, and under far other impulses 
than Gilbert ever thought of, much of his dream was realised. 




A REPORT oj the Voyage and success thereof, attempted in the year of 
our Lord 1583, by Sir HUMFREY GILBERT, Knight, with other 
gentlemen assisting him in that action, intended to discover and to 
plant Christian inhabitants in place convenient, upon those large 
and ample countries extended northward frovi the Cape of Florida, 
lying under very temperate climes, esteemed fertile and rich in 
minerals, yet not in the actual possession of any Christian prince. 
Written by Mr. Edward Hayes, gentleman, and principal actor in 
the same voyage^, who alone continued unto the end, and, by God's 
special assistance, rettirned home with his retinue safe and entire. 

MANY voyages have been pretended, yet hitherto 
never any thoroughly accomplished by our nation, 
of exact discovery into the bowels of those main, 
ample, and vast countries extended infinitely into the north 
from thirty degrees, or rather from twenty-five degrees, of 
septentrional latitude, neither hath a right way been taken of 
planting a Christian habitation and regiment* upon the 
same, as well may appear both by the little we yet do actually 
possess therein, and by our ignorance of the riches and 
secrets within those lands, which unto this day we know 
chiefly by the travel and report of other nations, and most 
of the French, who albeit they cannot challenge such right 
and interest unto the said countries as we, neither these 
many years have had opportunity nor means so great to dis- 
cover and to plant, being vexed with the calamities of in- 
testine wars, as we have had by the inestimable benefit of our 
long and happy peace, yet have they both ways performed 

1 Hayes was captain and owner of the Golden Hind, Gilbert's Rfcor- 
AdmiraL * Government. 



more, and had long since attained a sure possession and 
settled government of many provinces in those northerly 
parts of America, if their many attempts into those foreign 
and remote lands had not been impeached by their garboils 
at home. 

The first discovery of these coasts, never heard of before, 
was well begun by John Cabot the father and Sebastian his 
son, an Englishman born, who Λvere the first finders out of 
all that great tract of land stretching from the Cape of 
Florida unto those islands which we now call the Newfound- 
land; all which they brought and annexed unto the crown 
of England. Since when, if with like diligence the search 
of inland countries had been followed, as the discovery upon 
the coast and outparts thereof was performed by those two 
men, no doubt her Majesty's territories and revenue had 
been mightily enlarged and advanced by this day ; and, which 
is more, the seed of Christian religion had been sowed 
amongst those pagans, which by this time might have 
brought forth a most plentiful harvest and copious congre- 
gation of Christians; which must be the chief intent of such 
as shall make any attempt that way ; or else whatsoever is 
builded upon other foundation shall never obtain happy suc- 
cess nor continuance. 

And although we cannot precisely judge (which only be- 
longeth to God) what have been the humours of men stirred 
up to great attempts of discovering and planting in those 
remote countries, yet the events do shew that either God's 
cause hath not been chiefly preferred by them, or else God 
hath not permitted so abundant grace as the light of His 
word and knowledge of Him to be yet revealed unto those 
infidels before the appointed time. But most assuredly, the 
only cause of religion hitherto hath kept back, and will also 
bring forward at the time assigned by God, an efifectual and 
complete discovery and possession by Christians both of 
those ample countries and the riches within them hitherto 
concealed; whereof, notwithstanding, God in His wisdom 
hath permitted to be revealed from time to time a certain 
obscure and misty knowledge, by little and little to allure the 
minds of men that way, which else will be dull enough in the 
zeal of His cause, and thereby to prepare us unto a readiness 


for the execution of His will, against the due time ordained 
of calling those pagans unto Christianity. 

In the meanwhile it behoveth every man of great calling, 
in whom is any instinct of inclination unto this attempt, to 
examine his own motions, which, if the same proceed of 
ambition or avarice, he may assure himself it cometh not of 
God, and therefore cannot have confidence of God's protec- 
tion and assistance against the violence (else irresistible) 
both of sea and infinite perils upon the land; whom God yet 
may use [as] an instrument to further His cause and glory 
some way, but not to build upon so bad a foundation. 
Otherwise, if his motives be derived from a virtuous and 
heroical mind, preferring chiefly the honour of God, com- 
passion of poor infidels captived by the devil, tyrannising in 
most wonderful and dreadful manner over their bodies and 
souls; advancement of his honest and well-disposed country- 
men, willing to accompany him in such honourable actions; 
relief of sundry people within this realm distressed; all 
these be honourable purposes, imitating the nature of the 
munificent God, wherewith He is well pleased, who will 
assist such an actor beyond expectation of man. And the 
same, who feeleth this inclination in himself, by all likeli- 
hood may hope, or rather confidently repose in the preor- 
dinance of God, that in this last age of the world (or likely 
never) the time is complete of receiving also these gentiles 
into His mercy, and that God will raise Him an instrument 
to effect the same; it seeming probable by event of pre- 
cedent attempts made by the Spaniards and French sundry 
times, that the countries lying north of Florida God hath 
reserved the same to be reduced unto Christian civility by 
the English nation. For not long after that Christopher 
Columbus had discovered the islands and continent of the 
West Indies for Spain, John and Sebastian Cabot made dis- 
covery also of the rest from Florida northwards to the be- 
hoof of England. 

And Avhensoever afterwards the Spaniards, very prosper- 
ous in all their southern discoveries, did attempt anything 
into Florida and those regions inclining towards the north, 
they proved most unhappy, and were at length discouraged 
utterly by the hard and lamentable success of many both 


religious and valiant in arms, endeavouring to bring those 
northerly regions also under the Spanish jurisdiction, as if 
God had prescribed limits unto the Spanish nation which 
they might not exceed ; as by their own gests recorded may 
be aptly gathered. 

The French, as they can pretend less title unto these 
northern parts than the Spaniard, by how much the 
Spaniard made the first discovery of the same continent so 
far northward as unto Florida, and the French did but re- 
view that before discovered by the English nation, usurping 
upon our right, and imposing names upon countries, rivers, 
bays, capes, or headlands as if they had been the first finders 
of those coasts; which injury we offered not unto the 
Spaniards, but left off to discover when we approached the 
Spanish limits; even so God hath not hitherto permitted 
them to establish a possession permanent upon another's 
right, notwithstanding their manifold attempts, in which the 
issue hath been no less tragical than that of the Spaniards, 
as by their own reports is extant. 

Then, seeing the English nation only hath right unto these 
countries of America from the Cape of Florida northward 
by the privilege of first discovery, unto which Cabot was 
authorised by regal authority, and set forth by the expense 
of our late famous King Henry the Seventh; which right 
also seemeth strongly defended on our behalf by the power- 
ful hand of Almighty God withstanding the enterprises of 
other nations ; it may greatly encourage us upon so just 
ground, as is our right, and upon so sacred an intent, as 
to plant religion (our right and intent being meet founda- 
tions for the same), to prosecute effectually the full posses- 
sion of those so ample and pleasant countries appertaining 
unto the crown of England; the same, as is to be conjectured 
by infallible arguments of the world's end approaching, being 
now arrived unto the time by God prescribed of their voca- 
tion, if ever their calling unto the knowledge of God may 
be expected. Which also is very probable by the revolution 
and course of God's word and religion, which from the be- 
ginning hath moved from the east towards, and at last untOy 
the west, where it is like to end, unless the same begin again 
where it did in the east, which were to expect a like world 


again. But we are assured of the contrary by the prophecy 
of Christ, whereby we gather that after His word preached 
throughout the world shall be the end. And as the Gospel 
when it descended westward began in the south, and after- 
ward spread into the north of Europe; even so, as the same 
hath begun in the south countries of America, no less hope 
may be gathered that it will also spread into the north. 

These considerations may help to suppress all dreads rising 
of hard events in attempts made this way by other nations, 
as also of the heavy success and issue in the late enterprise 
made by a worthy gentleman our countryman, Sir Humfrey 
Gilbert, Knight, who was the first of our nation that carried 
people to erect an habitation and government in those north- 
erly countries of America. About which albeit he had con- 
sumed much substance, and lost his life at last, his people 
also perishing for the most part: yet the mystery thereof 
we must leave unto God, and judge charitably both of the 
cause, which was just in all pretence, and of the person, 
who was very zealous in prosecuting the same, deserving 
honourable remembrance for his good mind and expense 
of life in so virtuous an enterprise. Whereby nevertheless, 
lest any man should be dismayed by example of other folks' 
calamity, and misdeem that God doth resist all attempts in- 
tended that way, I thought good, so far as myself was an 
eye-witness, to deliver the circumstance and manner of our 
proceedings in that action ; in which the gentleman was so 
unfortunately encumbered with wants, and Avorse matched 
with many ill-disposed people, that his rare judgment and 
regiment premeditated for those affairs was subjected to 
tolerate abuses, and in sundry extremities to hold on a course 
more to uphold credit than likely in his own conceit happily 
to succeed. 

The issue of such actions, being always miserable, not 
guided by God, who abhorreth confusion and disorder, hath 
left this for admonition, being the first attempt by our 
nation to plant, unto such as shall take the same cause in 
hand hereafter, not to be discouraged from it; but to make 
men well advised how they handle His so high and excel- 
lent matters, as the carriage is of His word into those very 
mighty and vast countries. An action doubtless not to be 


intermeddled with base purposes, as many have made the 
same but a colour to shadow actions otherwise scarce 
justifiable; which doth excite God's heavy judgments in the 
end, to the terrifying of weak minds from the cause, with- 
out pondering His just proceedings; and doth also incense 
foreign princes against our attempts, how just soever, who 
cannot but deem the sequel very dangerous unto their state 
(if in those parts we should grow to strength), seeing the 
very beginnings are entered with spoil. 

And with this admonition denounced upon zeal towards 
God's cause, also towards those in whom appeareth dis- 
position honourable unto this action of planting Christian 
people and religion in those remote and barbarous nations of 
America (unto whom I wish all happiness), I will now pro- 
ceed to make relation briefly, yet particularly, of our voyage 
undertaken with Sir Humfrcy Gilbert, begun, continued, and 
ended adversely. 

When first Sir Hiimfrey Gilbert undertook the western 
discovery of America, and had procured from her Majesty 
a very large commission to inhabit and possess at his choice 
all remote and heathen lands not in the actual possession of 
any Christian prince, the same commission exemplified with 
many privileges, such as in his discretion he might demand, 
very many gentlemen of good estimation drew unto him, to 
associate him in so commendable an enterprise, so that the 
preparation was expected to grow unto a puissant fleet, able 
to encounter a king's power by sea. Nevertheless, amongst 
a multitude of voluntary men, their dispositions were diverse, 
which bred a jar, and made a division in the end, to the 
confusion of that attempt even before the same was begun. 
And when the shipping was in a manner prepared, and men 
ready upon the coast to go aboard, at that time some brake 
consort, and followed courses degenerating from the voyage 
before pretended. Others failed of their promises con- 
tracted, and the greater number were dispersed, leaving the 
General with few of his assured friends, with whom he ad- 
ventured to sea; where, having tasted of no less misfortune, 
he was shortly driven to retire home with the loss of a tall 
ship and, more to his grief, of a valiant gentleman, Miles 


Having buried, only in a preparation, a great mass of 
substance, whereby his estate was impaired, his mind yet 
not disma3'ed, he continued his former designment, and pur- 
posed to revive this enterprise, good occasion serving. Upon 
which determination standing long without means to satisfy 
his desire, at last he granted certain assignments out of his 
commission to sundry persons of mean ability, desiring the 
privilege of his grant, to plant and fortify in the north parts 
of America about the river of Canada; to whom if God gave 
good success in the north parts (where then no matter of 
moment was expected), the same, he thought, would greatly 
advance the hope of the south, and be a furtherance unto 
his determination that way. And the worst that might 
happen in that course might be excused, without prejudice 
unto him, by the former supposition that those north regions 
were of no regard. But chiefly, a possession taken in any 
parcel of those heathen countries, by virtue of his grant, did 
invest him of territories extending every way 200 leagues; 
which induced Sir Humfrey Gilbert to make those assign- 
ments, desiring greatly their expedition, because his com- 
mission did expire after six years, if in that space he had 
not gotten actual possession. 

Time went away without anything done by his assigns; 
insomuch that at last he must resolve himself to take a 
voyage in person, for more assurance to keep his patent in 
force, which then almost was expired or within two years. 
In furtherance of his determination, amongst others, Sir 
George Peckham, Knight, shewed himself very zealous to the 
action, greatly aiding him both by his advice and in the 
charge. Other gentlemen to their ability joined unto him, 
resolving to adventure their substance and lives in the same 
cause. Who beginning their preparation from that time, 
both of shipping, munition, victual, men, and things requisite, 
some of them continued the charge two years complete with- 
out intermission. Such were the difficulties and cross acci- 
dents opposing these proceedings, which took not end in less 
than two years; many of which circumstances I will omit. 

The last place of our assembly, before we left the coast 
of England, was in Cawset Bay, near unto Plymouth, then 
resolved to put unto the sea with' shipping and provision such 


as we had, before our store yet remaining, but chiefly the 
time and season of the year, were too far spent. Neverthe- 
less, it seemed first very doubtful by what way to shape our 
course, and to begin our intended discovery, either from the 
south northward or from the north southward. The first, 
that is, beginning south, without all controversy was the 
likeliest; wherein we were assured to have commodity of the 
current which from the Cape of Florida setteth northward, 
and would have furthered greatly our navigation, discover- 
ing from the foresaid cape along towards Cape Breton, and 
all those lands lying to the north. Also, the year being far 
spent, and arrived to the month of June, we were not to 
spend time in northerly courses, where we should be sur- 
prised with timely winter, but to covet the south, which we 
had space enough then to have attained, and there might 
with less detriment have wintered that season, being more 
mild and short in the south than in the north, where winter 
is both long and rigorous. These and other like reasons 
alleged in favour of the southern course first to be taken, to 
the contrary was inferred that forasmuch as both our vic- 
tuals and many other needful provisions were diminished 
and left insufficient for so long a voyage and for the win- 
tering of so many men, we ought to shape a course most 
likely to minister supply; and that was to take the New- 
foundland in our way, which was but 700 leagues from our 
English coast. Where being usually at that time of the 
year, and until the fine of August, a multitude of ships re- 
pairing thither for fish, we should be relieved abundantly 
with many necessaries, which, after the fishing ended, they 
might well spare and freely impart unto us. Not staying 
long upon that Nezvland coast, we might proceed southward, 
and follow still the sun, until we arrived at places more 
temperate to our content. 

By which reasons we were the rather induced to follow 
this northerly course, obeying unto necessity, which must 
be supplied. Otherwise, we doubted that sudden approach 
of winter, bringing with it continual fog and thick mists, 
tempest and rage of weather, also contrariety of currents 
descending from the Cape of Florida unto Cape Breton and 
Cape Race, would fall out to be great and irresistible im- 


pediments unto our further proceeding for that year, and 
compel us to winter in those north and cold regions. Where- 
fore, suppressing all objections to the contrary, we resolved 
to begin our course northward, and to follow, directly as 
we might, the trade way unto Newfoundland; from whence, 
after our refreshing and reparation of wants, we intended 
without delay, by God's permission, to proceed into the 
south, not omitting any river or bay which in all that large 
tract of land appeared to our view worthy of search. Im- 
mediately we agreed upon the manner of our course and 
orders to be observed in our voyage; which were delivered 
in writing, unto the captains and masters of every ship a 
copy, in manner following. 

Every ship had delivered two bullets or scrolls, the one 
sealed up in wax, the other left open ; in both which were 
included several watchwords. That open, serving upon our 
own coast or the coast of Ireland; the other sealed, was 
promised on all hands not to be broken up until we should 
be clear of the Irish coast; which from thenceforth did 
serve until we arrived and met all together in such harbours 
of the Newfoundland as were agreed for our rendez-vous. 
The said watchwords being requisite to know our consorts 
whensoever by night, either by fortune of weather, our fleet 
dispersed should come together again ; or one should hail 
another; or if by ill watch and steerage one ship should 
chance to fall aboard of another in the dark. 

The reason of the bullet sealed was to keep secret that 
watchword while we were upon our own coast, lest any of 
the company stealing from the fleet might bewray the same ; 
which known to an enemy, he might board us by night 
without mistrust, having our own watchword. 

Orders agreed upon hy the Captains and Masters to be 
observed by the neet of Sir Humfrey Gilbert. 

First, The Admiral to carry his flag by day, and his 
light by night. 

2. Item, if the Admiral shall shorten his sail by night, 
then to shew two lights until he be answered again by every 
ship shewing one light for a short time. 


3. Item, if the Admiral after his shortening of sail, as 
aforesaid, shall make more sail again; then he to shew three 
lights one above another. 

4. Item, if the Admiral shall happen to hull in the night, 
then to make a wavering light over his other light, wavering 
the light upon a pole. 

5. Item, if the fleet should happen to be scattered by 
weather, or other mishap, then so soon as one shall descry 
another, to hoise both topsails twice, if the weather will 
serve, and to strike them twice again ; but if the weather 
serve not, then to hoise the maintopsail twice, and forthwith 
to strike it twice again. 

6. Item, if it shall happen a great fog to fall, then presently 
every ship to bear up with the Admiral, if there be wind; 
but if it be a calm, then every ship to hull, and so to lie at 
hull till it clear. And if the fog do continue long, then the 
Admiral to shoot off two pieces every evening, and every 
ship to answer it with one shot; and every man bearing to 
the ship that is to leeward so near as he may. 

7. Item, every master to give charge unto the watch to look 
out well, for laying aboard one of another in the night, and 
in fogs. 

8. Item, every evening every ship to hail the Admiral, and 
so to fall astern him, sailing thorough the ocean; and being 
on the coast, every ship to hail him both morning and 

9. Item, if any ship be in danger in any way, by leak or 
otherwise, then she to shoot off a piece, and presently to hang 
out one light; whereupon every man to bear towards her, 
answering her with one light for a short time, and so to 
put it out again; thereby to give knowledge that they have 
seen her token. 

10. Item, whensoever the Admiral shall hang out her en- 
sign in the main shrouds, then every man to come aboard 
her as a token of counsel. 

11. Item, if there happen any storm or contrary wind to the 
fleet after the discovery, whereby they are separated; then 
every ship to repair unto their last good port, there to meet 


Our Course agreed upon. 

The course first to be taken for the discovery is to bear 
directly to Cape Race, the most southerly cape of Newfound- 
land; and there to harbour ourselves either in Rogneiix or 
Fermous, being the first places appointed for our rendez- 
vous, and the next harbours unto the northward of Cape 
Race: and therefore every ship separated from the fleet to 
repair to that place so fast as God shall permit, whether 
you shall fall to the southward or to the northward of it, and 
there to stay for the meeting of the whole fleet the space 
of ten days; and when you shall depart, to leave marks. 

Beginning our course from Scilly, the nearest is by west- 
south-west (if the wind serve) until such time as we have 
brought ourselves in the latitude of 43 or 44 degrees, because 
the ocean is subject much to southerly winds in June and 
July. Then to take traverse from 45 to 47 degrees of lati- 
tude, if we be enforced by contrary winds ; and not to go to 
the northward of the height of 47 degrees of septentrional 
latitude by no means, if God shall not enforce the contrary; 
but to do your endeavour to keep in the height of 46 degrees, 
so near as you can possibly, because Cape Race lieth about 
that height. 


If by contrary winds we be driven back upon the coast of 
England, then to repair unto Scilly for a place of our as- 
sembly or meeting. If we be driven back by contrary winds 
that we cannot pass the coast of Ireland, then the place of 
our assembly to be at Β ere haven or Baltimore haven. If 
we shall not happen to meet at Cape Race, then the place of 
rendez-vous to be at Cape Breton, or the nearest harbour 
unto the westward of Cape Breton. If by means of other 
shipping we may not safely stay there, then to rest at the 
very next safe port to the westward ; every ship leaving their 
marks behind them for the more certainty of the after 
comers to know where to find them. The marks that every 
man ought to leave in such a case, were of the General's 
private device written by himself, sealed also in close wax, 
and delivered unto every ship one scroll, which was not to be 


opened until occasion required, whereby every man was 
certified what to leave for instruction of after comers; that 
every of us coming into any harbour or river might know 
who had been there, or whether any were still there up 
higher into the river, or departed, and which way. 

Orders thus determined, and promises mutually given to 
be observed, every man withdrew himself unto his charge; 
the anchors being already weighed, and our ships under 
sail, having a soft gale of wind, we began our voyage upon 
Tuesday, the ii. day of June, in the year of our Lord 1583, 
having in our fleet (at our departure from Cazvset Bay) 
these ships, whose names and burthens, with the names of 
the captains and masters of them, I have also inserted, as 
followeth: — i. The Delight, alias the George, of burthen 120 
tons, was Admiral ; in which went the General, and William 
Winter, captain in her and part owner, and Richard Clarke, 
master. 2. The bark Raleigh, set forth by Master Walter 
Raleigh, of the burthen of 200 tons, was then Vice- Admiral ; 
in which went Master Butler, captain, and Robert Davis, of 
Bristol, master. 3. The Golden Hind, of burthen 40 tons, 
was then Rear- Admiral ; in which went Edward Hayes, cap- 
tain and owner, and William Cox, of Limehouse, master. 
4. The Swallow, of burthen 40 tons; in her was captain 
Maurice Browne. 5. The Squirrel, of burthen 10 tons; in 
which went captain William Andrews, and one Cade, master. 
We were in number in all about 260 men ; among whom we 
had of every faculty good choice, as shipwrights, masons, 
carpenters, smiths, and such like, requisite to such an action; 
also mineral men and refiners. Besides, for solace of our 
people, and allurement of the savages, we were provided of 
music in good variety ; not omitting the least toys, as morris- 
dancers, hobby-horse, and May-like conceits to delight the 
savage people, whom we intended to win by all fair means 
possible. And to that end we were indifferently furnished 
of all petty haberdashery wares to barter with those simple 

In this manner we set forward, departing (as hath been 
said) out of Cawset Bay the 11. day of June, being Tuesday, 
the weather and wind fair and good all day; but a great 


storm of thunder and wind fell the same night. Thursday 
following, when we hailed one another in the evening, 
according to the order before specified, they signified unto 
us out of the Vice-Admiral, that both the captain, and very 
many of the men, were fallen sick. And about midnight 
the Vice-Admiral forsook us, notwithstanding we had the 
wind east, fair and good. But it was after credibly re- 
ported that they were infected with a contagious sickness, 
and arrived greatly distressed at Plymouth; the reason I 
could never understand. Sure I am, no cost was spared by 
their owner, Master Raleigh, in setting them forth; there- 
fore I leave it unto God. By this time we were in 48 degrees 
of latitude, not a little grieved with the loss of the most 
puissant ship in our fleet; after whose departure the Golden 
Hind succeeded in the place of Vice-Admiral, and removed 
her flag from the mizen into the foretop. From Saturday, 
the 15. of June, until the 28., which was upon a Friday, we 
never had fair day without fog or rain, and winds bad, 
much to the west-north-west, whereby we were driven south- 
ward unto 41 degrees scarce. 

About this time of the year the winds are commonly west 
towards the Nezvfoundland, keeping ordinarily within two 
points of west to the south or to the north; whereby the 
course thither falleth out to be long and tedious after June, 
which in March, April, and May, hath been performed out 
of England in 22 days and less. We had wind always so 
scant from west-north-west, and from west-south-west again, 
that our traverse was great, running south unto 41 degrees 
almost, and afterwards north into 51 degrees. Also we 
were encumbered with much fog and mists in manner 
palpable, in which we could not keep so well together, but 
were dissevered, losing the company of the Swallow and 
the Squirrel upon the 20. day of July, whom we met again 
at several places upon the Newfoundland coast the 3. of 
August, as shall be declared in place convenient. Saturday, 
the 27. July, we might descry, not far from us, as it were 
mountains of ice driven upon the sea, being then in 50 
degrees, which were carried southward to the weather of 
us ; whereby may be conjectured that some current doth set 
that way from the north. 


Before we come to Newfoundland, about 50 leagues on 
this side, we pass the bank, which are high grounds rising 
within the sea and under water, yet deep enough and with- 
out danger, being commonly not less than 25 and 30 fathom 
water upon them; the same, as it were some vein of moun- 
tains within the sea, do run along and from the Newfound- 
land, beginning northward about 52 or 53 degrees of latitude, 
and do extend into the south infinitely. The breadth of this 
bank is somewhere more, and somewhere less ; but we found 
the same about ten leagues over, having sounded both on 
this side thereof, and the other toward Newfoundland, but 
found no ground with almost 200 fathom of line, both before 
and after we had passed the bank. The Portugals, and 
French chiefly, have a notable trade of fishing upon this 
bank, where are sometimes an hundred or more sails of ships, 
who commonly begin the fishing in April, and have ended 
by July. That fish is large, always wet, having no land near 
to dry, and is called cod fish. During the time of fishing, 
a man shall know without sounding when he is upon the bank, 
by the incredible multitude of sea-fowl hovering over the 
same, to prey upon the offals and garbage of fish thrown 
out by fishermen, and floating upon the sea. 

Upon Tuesday, the 11. of June we forsook the coast of 
England. So again [on] Tuesday, the 30. of July, seven 
weeks after, we got sight of land, being immediately embayed 
in the Grand Bay, or some other great bay; the certainty 
whereof we could not judge, so great haze and fog did hang 
upon the coast, as neither we might discern the land well, 
nor take the sun's height. But by our best computation we 
were then in the 51 degrees of latitude. Forsaking this bay 
and uncomfortable coast (nothing appearing unto us but 
hideous rocks and mountains, bare of trees, and void of any 
green herb) we followed the coast to the south, with weather 
fair and clear. We had sight of an island named Penguin, 
of a fowl there breeding in abundance almost incredible, 
which cannot fly, their wings not able to carry their body, 
being very large (not much less than a goose) and exceeding 
fat, which the Frenchmen use to take without difficulty 
upon that island, and to barrel them up with salt. But for 
lingering of time, we had made us there tlie like provision. 


Trending this coast, we came to the island called 
Baccalaos, being not past two leagues from the main ; to the 
south thereof lieth Cape St. Francis, five leagues distant 
from Baccalaos, between which goeth in a great bay, by the 
vulgar sort called the Bay of Conception. Here we met with 
the Swallow again, whom we had lost in the fog, and all 
her men altered into other apparel ; whereof it seemed their 
store was so amended, that for joy and congratulation of 
our meeting, they spared not to cast up into the air and over- 
board their caps and hats in good plenty. The captain, 
albeit himself was very honest and religious, yet was he not 
appointed of men to his humour and desert ; who for the 
most part were such as had been by us surprised upon the 
narrow seas of England, being pirates, and had taken at 
that instant certain Frenchmen laden, one bark with wines, 
and another Avith salt. Both which we rescued, and took the 
man-of-war with all her men, which was the same ship now 
called the Szuallow; following still their kind so oft as, 
being separated from the General, they found opportunity 
to rob and spoil. And because God's justice did follow the 
same company, even to destruction, and to the overthrow 
also of the captain (though not consenting to their mis- 
demeanour) I will not conceal anything that maketh to 
the manifestation and approbation of His judgments, for 
examples of others ; persuaded that God more sharply took 
revenge upon them, and hath tolerated longer as great out- 
rage in others, by how much these went under protection 
of His cause and religion, which was then pretended. 

Therefore upon further enquiry it was known how this 
company met with a bark returning home after the fish- 
ing with his freight; and because the men in the Swallow 
were very near scanted of victuals, and chiefly of apparel, 
doubtful withal where or when to find and meet with their 
Admiral, they besought the captain that they might go 
aboard this Newlander, only to borrow what might be spared, 
the rather because the same was bound homeward. Leave 
given, not without charge to deal favourably, they came 
aboard the fisherman, whom they rifled of tackle, sails, cables, 
victuals, and the men of their apparel ; not sparing by tor- 
ture, winding cords about their heads, to draw out else what 


they thought good. This clone with expedition, like men skil- 
ful in such mischief, as they took their cockboat to go aboard 
their own ship, it was overwhelmed in the sea, and certain 
of these men there drowned; the rest were preserved even 
by those silly souls whom they had before spoiled, who saved 
and delivered them aboard the Swallow. What became 
afterwards of the poor Newlander, perhaps destitute of sails 
and furniture sufficient to carry them home, whither they 
had not less to run than 700 leagues, God alone knoweth; 
who took vengeance not long after of the rest that escaped 
at this instant, to reveal the fact, and justify to the world 
God's judgments inflicted upon them, as shall be declared 
in place convenient. 

Thus after we had met with the Swallow, we held on our 
course southward, until we came against the harbour called 
St. John, about five leagues from the former Cape of St. 
Francis, where before the entrance into the harbour, we 
found also the frigate or Squirrel lying at anchor ; whom the 
English merchants, that were and always be Admirals by 
turns interchangeably over the fleets of fishermen within the 
same harbour, would not permit to enter into the harbour. 
Glad of so happy meeting, both of the Swallow and frigate 
in one day, being Saturday, the third of August, we made 
ready our fights,* and prepared to enter the harbour, any 
resistance to the contrary notwithstanding, there being with- 
in of all nations to the number of 36 sails. But first the 
General despatched a boat to give them knowledge of 
his coming for no ill intent, having commission from her 
Majesty for his voyage he had in hand; and immediately we 
followed with a slack gale, and in the very entrance, which 
is but narrow, not above two butts' length,* the Admiral fell 
upon a rock on the larboard side by great oversight, in that 
the weather was fair, the rock much above water fast by 
the shore, where neither went any sea-gate.^ But we found 
such readiness in the English merchants to help us in that 
danger, that without delay there were brought a number of 
boats, which towed off the ship, and cleared her of danger. 

Having taken place convenient in the road, we let fall 
anchors, the captains and masters repairing aboard our 
"See First Series, p. liii. * Bow-shot. c Current. 


Admiral; whither also came immediately the masters and 
owners of the fishing fleet of Englishmen, to understand the 
General's intent and cause of our arrival there. They were 
all satisfied when the General had shewed his commission, 
and purpose to take possession of those lands to the behalf 
of the crown of England, and the advancement of the 
Christian religion in those paganish regions, requiring but 
their lawful aid for repairing of his fleet, and supply of some 
necessaries, so far as conveniently might be afforded him, 
both out of that and other harbours adjoining. In lieu 
whereof he made offer to gratify them with any favour and 
privilege, which upon their better advice they should demand, 
the like being not to be obtained hereafter for greater price. 
So craving expedition of his demand, minding to proceed 
further south without long detention in those parts, he dis- 
missed them, after promise given of their best endeavour 
to satisfy speedily his so reasonable request. The merchants 
with their masters departed, they caused forthwith to be 
discharged all the great ordnance of their fleet in token of 
our welcome. 

It was further determined that every ship of our fleet 
should deliver unto the merchants and masters of that harbour 
a note of all their wants : which done, the ships, as well English 
as strangers, were taxed at an easy rate to make supply. 
And besides, commissioners were appointed, part of our own 
company and part of theirs, to go into other harbours adjoin- 
ing (for our English merchants command all there) to levy 
our provision : whereunto the Portugals, above other nations, 
did most willingly anl liberally contribute. In so much 
as we were presented, above our allowance, with wines, 
marmalades, most fine rusk' or biscuit, sweet oils, and sundry 
delicacies. Also we wanted not of fresh salmons, trouts, 
lobsters, and other fresh fish brought daily unto us. More- 
over as the manner is in their fishing, every week to choose 
their Admiral anew, or rather they succeed in orderly course, 
and have weekly their Admiral's feast solemnized : even so 
the General, captains, and masters of our fleet were con- 
tinually invited and feasted. To grow short in our abun- 
dance at home the entertainment had been delightful; but 

β Rusk (Sp. rosco)= ship's biscuit. 


after our wants and tedious passage through the ocean, 
it seemed more acceptable and of greater contentation, by 
how much the same was unexpected in that desolate corner 
of the world; where, at other times of the year, wild beasts 
and birds have only the fruition of all those countries, which 
now seemed a place very populous and much frequented. 

The next morning being Sunday, and the fourth of August, 
the General and his company were brought on land by 
English merchants, who shewed unto us their accustomed 
walks unto a place they call the Garden. But nothing ap- 
peared more than nature itself without art: who confusedly 
hath brought forth roses abundantly, wild, but odoriferous, 
and to sense very comfortable. Also the like plenty of rasp- 
berries, which do grow in every place. 

Monday following, the General had his tent set up; who, 
being accompanied with his own followers, summoned the 
merchants and masters, both English and strangers, to be 
present at his taking possession of those countries. Before 
whom openly was read, and interpreted unto the strangers, 
his commission : by virtue whereof he took possession in the 
same harbour of St. John, and 200 leagues every way, 
invested the Queen's Majesty with the title and dignity 
thereof, had delivered unto him, after the custom of England, 
a rod, and a turf of the same soil, entering possession also 
for him, his heirs and assigns for ever; and signified unto 
all men, that from that time forward, they should take the 
same land as a territory appertaining to the Queen of 
England, and himself authorised under her Majesty to pos- 
sess and enjoy it, and to ordain laws for the government 
thereof, agreeable, so near as conveniently might be, unto 
the laws of England, under which all people coming thither 
hereafter, either to inhabit, or by way of traffic, should be 
subjected and goΛferned. And especially at the same time for 
a beginning, he proposed and delivered three laws to be in 
force immediately. That is to say the first for religion, 
which in public exercise should be according to the Church 
of England. The second, for maintenance of her Majesty's 
right and possession of those territories, against which if any 
thing were attempted prejudicial, the party or parties offend- 
ing should be adjudged and executed as in case of high 


treason, according to the laws of England. The third, if 
any person should utter words sounding to the dishonour of 
her Majesty, he should lose his ears, and have his ship and 
goods confiscate. 

These contents published, obedience was promised by 
general voice and consent of the multitude, as well of 
Englishmen as strangers, praying for continuance of this 
possession and government begun ; after this, the assembly 
was dismissed. And afterwards were erected not far from 
that place the arms of England engraven in lead, and infixed 
upon a pillar of wood. Yet further and actually to establish 
this possession taken in the right of her Majesty, and to 
the behoof of Sir Humfrey Gilbert, knight, his heirs and 
assigns for ever, the General granted in fee-farm divers 
parcels of land lying by the water-side, both in this harbour 
of St. John, and elsewhere, which was to the owners a 
great commodity, being thereby assured, by their proper 
inheritance, of grounds convenient to dress and to dry their 
fish ; whereof many times before they did fail, being pre- 
vented by them that came first into the harbour. For which 
grounds they did covenant to pay a certain rent and service 
unto Sir Humfrey Gilbert, his heirs or assigns for ever, and 
yearly to maintain possession of the same, by themselves 
or their assigns. 

Now remained only to take in provision granted, according 
as every ship was taxed, which did fish upon the coast adjoin- 
ing. In the meanwhile, the General appointed men unto their 
charge : some to repair and trim the ships, others to attend in 
gathering together our supply and provisions : others to 
search the commodities and singularities of the country, to 
be found by sea or land, and to make relation unto the 
General what either themselves could know by their own 
travail and experience, or by good intelligence of English- 
men or strangers, who had longest frequented the same 
coast. Also some observed the elevation of the pole, and drew 
plots of the country exactly graded. And by that I could 
gather by each man's several relation, I have drawn a brief 
description of the Newfoundland, with the commodities by 
sea or land already made, and such also as are in possibility 
and great likelihood to be made. Nevertheless the cards and 

HC— Vol. 33 (10) 


plots that were drawn, with the due gradation of the har- 
bours, bays, and capes, did perish with the Admiral : where- 
fore in the description following, I must omit the particulars 
of such things. 

That which we do call the Newfoundland, and the French- 
men Baccalaos, is an island, or rather, after the opinion of 
some, it consisteth of sundry islands and broken lands, situ- 
ate in the north regions of America, upon the gulf and 
entrance of a great river called St. Lawrence in Canada; 
into the which, navigation may be made both on the south 
and north side of this island. The land lieth south and 
north, containing in length between 300 and 400 miles, ac- 
counting from Cape Race, which is in 46 degrees 25 minutes, 
unto the Grand Bay in 52 degrees, of septentrional latitude. 
The land round about hath very many goodly bays and har- 
bours, safe roads for ships, the like not to be found in any 
part of the known world. 

The common opinion that is had of intemperature and 
extreme cold that should be in this countrj^, as of some part 
it may be verified, namely the north, where I grant it is more 
cold than in countries of Europe, which are under the same 
elevation: even so it cannot stand with reason and nature 
of the clime, that the south parts should be so intemperate 
as the bruit hath gone. For as the same do lie under the 
climes of Bretagne, Anjou, Poictou in France, between 46 
and 49 degrees, so can they not so much differ from the 
temperature of those countries : unless upon the out-coast 
lying open unto the ocean and sharp winds, it must indeed 
be subject to more cold than further within the land, where 
the mountains are interposed as walls and bulwarks, to 
defend and to resist the asperity and rigour of the sea and 
weather. Some hold opinion that the Newfoundland might 
be the more subject to cold, by how much it lieth high and 
near unto the middle region. I grant that not in Newfound- 
land alone, but in Germany, Italy and Afric, even under the 
equinoctial line, the mountains are extreme cold, and sel- 
dom uncovered of snow, in their culm and highest tops, 
which Cometh to pass by the same reason that they are ex- 
tended towards the middle region : yet in the countries lying 
beneath them, it is found quite contrary. Even so, all hills 


having their descents, the valleys also and low grounds must 
be likewise hot or temperate, as the clime doth give in New- 
foundland: though I am of opinion that the sun's reflection 
is much cooled, and cannot be so forcible in Newfoundland, 
nor generally throughout America, as in Europe or Afric: 
by how much the sun in his diurnal course from east to west, 
passeth over, for the most part, dry land and sandy coun- 
tries, before he arriveth at the west of Europe or Afric, 
whereby his motion increaseth heat, with little or no quali- 
fication by moist vapours. Where [as], on the contrary, he 
passeth from Europe and Afric unto America over the 
ocean, from whence he draweth and carrieth with him 
abundance of moist vapours, which do qualify and enfeeble 
greatly the sun's reverberation upon this country chiefly of 
Newfoundland, being so much to the northward. Never- 
theless, as I said before, the cold cannot be so intolerable 
under the latitude of 46, 47, and 48, especial within land, that 
it should be unhabitable, as some do suppose, seeing also 
there are very many people more to the north by a great deal. 
And in these south parts there be certain beasts, ounces or 
leopards, and birds in like manner, which in the summer we 
have seen, not heard of in countries of extreme and vehe- 
ment coldness. Besides, as in the months of June, July, 
August and September, the heat is somewhat more than in 
England at those seasons : so men remaining upon the south 
parts near unto Cape Race, until after holland-tide,'' have 
not found the cold so extreme, nor much differing from the 
temperature of England. Those which have arrived there 
after November and December have found the snow exceed- 
ing deep, whereat no marvel, considering the ground upon 
the coast is rough and uneven, and the snow is driven into 
the places most declining, as the like is to be seen with us. 
The like depth of snow happily shall not be found within 
land upon the plainer countries, which also are defended by 
the mountains, breaking off the violence of winds and 
weather. But admitting extraordinary cold in those south 
parts, above that with us here, it cannot be so great as in 
Swedeland, much less in Moscovia or Russia: yet are the 
same countries very populous, and the rigour of cold is dis- 

' All-hallow-tide (November 1). 


pensed with by the commodity of stoves, warm clothing, 
meats and drinks: all of which need not to be wanting in 
the Newfoundland, if we had intent there to inhabit. 

In the south parts we found no inhabitants, which by all 
likelihood have abandoned those coasts, the same being so 
much frequented by Christians; but in the north are savages 
altogether harmless. Touching the commodities of this 
country, serving either for sustentation of inhabitants or for 
maintenance of traffic, there are and may be made divers; 
so that it seemeth that nature hath recompensed that only 
defect and incommodity of some sharp cold, by many bene- 
fits ; namely, with incredible quantity, and no less variety, of 
kinds of fish in the sea and fresh waters, as trouts, salmons, 
and other fish to us unknown ; also cod, which alone draweth 
many nations thither, and is become the most famous fishing 
of the world ; abundance of whales, for which also is a very 
great trade in the bays of Placentia and the Grand Bay, 
where is made train oil of the whale; herring, the largest 
that have been heard of, and exceeding the Marstrand her- 
ring of Norway; but hitherto was never benefit taken of 
the herring fishing. There are sundry other fish very deli- 
cate, namely, the bonito, lobsters, turbot, with others infinite 
not sought after; oysters having pearl but not orient in 
colour ; I took it, by reason they were not gathered in season. 

Concerning the inland commodities, as well to be drawn 
from this land, as from the exceeding large countries ad- 
joining, there is nothing which our east and northerly 
countries of Europe do yield, but the like also may be made 
in them as plentifully, by time and industry; namely, resin, 
pitch, tar, soap-ashes, deal-board, masts for ships, hides, furs, 
flax, hemp, corn, cables, cordage, linen cloth, metals, and 
many more. All which the countries will afford, and the soil 
is apt to yield. The trees for the most in those south parts 
are fir-trees, pine, and cypress, all yielding gum and turpen- 
tine. Cherry trees bearing fruit no bigger than a small pease. 
Also pear-trees, but fruitless. Other trees of some sort to 
us unknown. The soil along the coast is not deep of earth, 
bringing forth abundantly peasen small, yet good feeding for 
cattle. Roses passing sweet, like unto our musk roses in 
form; raspises; a berry which we call whorts, good and 


wholesome to eat. The grass and herb doth fat sheep in 

very short space, proved by English merchants which have 

carried sheep thither for fresh victual and had them raised 

exceeding fat in less than three weeks. Peasen which our 

countrymen have sown in the time of May, have come up 

fair, and been gathered in the beginning of August, of which 

our General had a present acceptable for the rareness, being 

the first fruits coming up by art and industry in that desolate 

and dishabited land. Lakes or pools of fresh water, both on 

the tops of mountains and in the valleys ; in which are said to 

be muscles not unlike to have pearl, which I had put in 

trial, if by mischance falling unto me I had not been letted 

from that and other good experiments I was minded to 

make. Fowl both of water and land in great plenty and 

diversity. All kind of green fowl ; others as big as bustards, 

yet not the same. A great white fowl called of some a 

gaunt. Upon the land divers sort of hawks, as falcons, and 

others by report. Partridges most plentiful, larger than ours, 

grey and white of colour, and rough-footed like doves, which 

our men after one flight did kill with cudgels, they were so 

fat and unable to fly. Birds, some like blackbirds, linnets, 

canary birds, and other very small. Beasts of sundry kinds; 

red deer, buffies, or a beast as it seemeth by the tract and foot 

very large, in manner of an ox. Bears, ounces or leopards, 

some greater and some lesser; wolves, foxes, which to the 

northward a little further are black, whose fur is esteemed 

in some countries of Europe very rich. Otters, beavers, 

marterns; and in the opinion of most men that saw it, the 

General had brought unto him a sable alive, which he sent 

unto his brother. Sir John Gilbert, Knight, of Devonshire, 

but it was never delivered, as after I understood. \Ve could 

not observe the hundredth part of creatures in those un- 

habited lands; but these mentioned may induce us to glorify 

the magnificent God, who hath super-abundantly replenished 

the earth with creatures serving for the use of man, though 

man hath not used the fifth part of the same, which the 

more doth aggravate the fault and foolish sloth in many 

of our nation, choosing rather to live indirectly, and 

very miserably to live and die within this realm pestered 

with inhabitants, than to adventure as becometh men, to 


obtain an habitation in those remote lands, in which nature 
very prodigally doth minister unto men's endeavours, and 
for art to work upon. For besides these already recounted 
and infinite more, the mountains generally make shew of 
mineral substance ; iron very common, lead, and somewhere 
copper. I will not aver of richer metals; albeit by the cir- 
cumstances following, more than hope may be conceived 

For amongst other charges given to enquire out the 
singularities of this country, the General was most curious 
in the search of metals, commanding the mineral-man and 
refiner especially to be diligent. The same was a Saxorf 
born, honest, and religious, named Daniel. Who after search 
brought at first some sort of ore, seeming rather to be iron 
than other metal. The next time he found ore, which with 
no small show of contentment he delivered unto the General, 
using protestation that if silver were the thing which might 
satisfy the General and his followers, there it was, advising 
him to seek no further ; the peril whereof he undertook upon 
his life (as dear unto him as the crown of England unto her 
Majesty, that I may use his own words) if it fell not out 

Myself at this instant liker to die than to live, by a mis- 
chance, could not follow this confident opinion of our refiner 
to my own satisfaction; but afterward demanding our Gen- 
real's opinion therein, and to have some part of the ore, he 
replied. Content yourself, I have seen enough; and were it 
hilt to satisfy my private humour, I would proceed no further. 
The promise unto my friends, and necessity to bring also the 
south countries within compass of my patent near expired, as 
zue have already done these north parts, do only persuade 
me further. And touching the ore, I have sent it aboard, 
zvhereof I would have no speech to be made so long as we 
remain within harbour; here being both Portugals, Biscay- 
ans, and Frenchmen, not far off, from whom must be kept 
any bruit or muttering of such matter. When we are at sea, 
proof shall be made; if it he our desire, we may return the 
sooner hither again. Whose answer I judged reasonable, 
and contenting me λνεΐΐ ; wherewith I will conclude this nar- 

8 Probably from the mining district of Lower Saxony. 


ration and description of the Newfoundland, and proceed to 
the rest of our voyage, which ended tragically. 

While the better sort of us were seriously occupied in 
repairing our wants, and contriving of matters for the com- 
modity of our voyage, others of another sort and disposition 
were plotting of mischief; some casting to steal away our 
shipping by night, watching opportunity by the General's and 
captains' lying on the shore; whose conspiracies discovered, 
they were prevented. Others drew together in company, and 
carried away out of the harbours adjoining a ship laden with 
fish, setting the poor men on shore. A great many more of 
our people stole into the woods to hide themselves, attending 
time and means to return home by such shipping as daily 
departed from the coast. Some were sick of fluxes, and 
many dead; and in brief, by one means or other our com- 
pany was diminished, and many by the General licensed to 
return home. Insomuch as after we had reviewed our peo- 
ple, resolved to see an end of our voyage, we grew scant of 
men to furnish all our shipping; it seemed good therefore 
unto the General to leave the Swallow with such provision as 
might be spared for transporting home the sick people. 

The captain of the Delight, or Admiral, returned into 
England, in whose stead was appointed captain Maurice 
Browne, before captain of the Swallow; who also brought 
with him into the Delight all his men of the Swallozv, which 
before have been noted of outrage perpetrated and com- 
mitted upon fishermen there met at sea. 

The General made choice to go in his frigate the Squirrel, 
whereof the captain also was amongst them that returned 
into England; the same frigate being most convenient to 
discover upon the coast, and to search into every harbour or 
creek, which a great ship could not do. Therefore the 
frigate was prepared with her nettings and fights, and over- 
charged with bases and such small ordnance, more to give 
a show, than with judgment to foresee unto the safety of 
her and the men, which afterward was an occasion also of 
their overthrow. 

Now having made ready our shipping, that is to say, the 
Delight, the Golden Hind, and the Squirrel, we put aboard 
our provision, which was wines, bread or rusk, fish wet and 


dry, sweet oils, besides many other, as marmalades, figs, 
limons barrelled, and such like. Also we had other neces- 
sary provisions for trimming our ships, nets and lines to fish 
withal, boats or pinnaces fit for discovery. In brief, we were 
supplied of our wants commodiously, as if we had been in 
a country or some city populous and plentiful of all things. 

We departed from this harbour of St. John's upon Tues- 
day, the 20. of August, which we found by exact observation 
to be in 47 degrees 40 minutes ; and the next day by night we 
were at Cape Race, 25 leagues from the same harborough. 
This cape lieth south-south-west from St. John's; it is a low 
land, being off from the cape about half a league; within the 
sea riseth up a rock against the point of the cape, which 
thereby is easily known. It is in latitude 46 degrees 25 
minutes. Under this cape we were becalmed a small time, 
during which we laid out hooks and lines to take cod, and 
drew in less than two hours fish so large and in such abun- 
dance, that many days after we fed upon no other provision. 
From hence we shaped our course unto the island of Sablon, 
if conveniently it would so fall out, also directly to Cape 

Sablon lieth to the seaward of Cape Breton about 25 
leagues, whither we were determined to go upon intelligence 
we had of a Portugal, during our abode in St. John's, who 
was himself present when the Portugals, above thirty years 
past, did put into the same island both neat and swine to 
breed, which were since exceedingly multiplied. This seemed 
unto us very happy tidings, to have in an island lying so near 
unto the main, which we intended to plant upon, such store 
of cattle, whereby we might at all times conveniently be re- 
lieved of victual, and served of store for breed. 

In this course we trended along the coast, which from 
Cape Race stretcheth into the north-west, making a bay Avhich 
some called Trepassa^ Then it goeth out again towards the 
west, and maketh a point, which with Cape Race lieth in 
manner east and west. But this point inclineth to the north, 
to the west of which goeth in the Bay of Placentia. We sent 
men on land to take view of the soil along this coast, whereof 

β From the Baie des Trepasses at the Pointe du Raz in Brittany, from 
which Cape Race itself is named. 


they made good report, and some of them had will to be 
planted there. They saw pease growing in great abundance 

The distance between Cape Race and Cape Breton is 87 
leagues; in which navigation we spent eight days, having 
many times the wind indifferent good, yet could we never 
attain sight of any land all that time, seeing we were hindered 
hy the current. At last we fell into such flats and dangers, 
that hardly any of us escaped; where nevertheless we lost 
our Admiral ^" with all the men and provisions, not knowing 
certainly the place. Yet for inducing men of skill to make 
conjecture, by our course and way we held from Cape Race 
thither, that thereby the flats and dangers may be inserted 
in sea cards, for warning to others that may follow the 
same course hereafter, I have set down the best reckonings 
that were kept by expert men, William Cox, Master of the 
Hind, and John Paid, his mate, both of Limehouse .... 
Our course we held in clearing us of these flats was east- 
south-east, and south-east, and south, fourteen leagues, with 
a marvellous scant wind. 

Upon Tuesday, the 27. of August, toward the evening, 
our General caused them in his frigate to sound, who found 
white sand at 35 fathom, being then in latitude about 44 
degrees. Wednesday, toward night, the wind came south, 
and we bare with the land all that night, west-north-\vest, 
contrary to the mind of Master Cox; nevertheless m'C fol- 
lowed the Admiral, deprived of power to prevent a mischief, 
which by no contradiction could be brought to hold another 
course, alleging they could not make the ship to work better, 
nor to lie otherways. The evening was fair and pleasant, 
yet not without token o'f storm to ensue, and most part of 
this Wednesday night, like the swan that singeth before her 
death, they in the Admiral, or Delight, continued in sounding 
of trumpets, with drums and fifes : also winding the cornets 
and hautboys, and in the end of their jollity, left with the 
battle and ringing of doleful knells. Towards the evening 
also we caught in the Golden Hind a very mighty porpoise 
with a harping iron, having first stricken divers of them, and 
brought away part of their flesh sticking upon the iron, but 

" The Delight. 


could recover only that one. These also, passing through the 
ocean in herds, did portend storm. I omit to recite frivolous 
reports by them in the frigate, of strange voices the same 
night, which scared some from the helm. 

Thursday, the 29. of August, the wind rose, and blew 
vehemently at south and by east, bringing withal rain and 
thick mist, so that we could not see a cable length before us; 
and betimes in the morning we were altogether run and 
folded in amongst flats and sands, amongst which we 
found shoal and deep in every three or four ships' length, 
after we began to sound: but first we were upon them un- 
awares, until Master Cox looking out, discerned, in his 
judgment, white cliffs, crying Land! withal; though we 
could not afterward descry any land, it being very likely the 
breaking of the sea white, which seemed to be white cliffs, 
through the haze and thick weather. 

Immediately tokens were given unto the Delight, to cast 
about to seaward, which, being the greater ship, and of 
burthen 120 tons, was yet foremost upon the breach, keeping 
so ill watch, that they knew not the danger, before they felt 
the same, too late to recover it; for presently the Admiral 
struck aground, and had soon after her stern and hinder 
parts beaten in pieces; whereupon the rest (that is to say, 
the frigate, in which was the General, and the Golden Hind) 
cast about east-south-east, bearing to the south, even for our 
lives, into the wind's eye, because that way carried us to the 
seaward. Making out from this danger, we sounded one 
while seven fathom, then five fathom, then four fathom and 
less, again deeper, immediately four fathom, then but three 
fathom, the sea going mightily and high. At last we re- 
covered, God be thanked, in some despair, to sea room 

In this distress, we had vigilant eye unto the Admiral, 
whom we saw cast away, without power to give the men 
succour, neither could Ave espy any of the men that leaped 
overboard to save themselves, either in the same pinnace, or 
cock, or upon rafters, and such like means presenting them- 
selves to men in those extremities, for we desired to saA^e 
the men by every possible means. But all in vain, sith God 
had determined their ruin; yet all that day, and part of the 


next, we beat up and down as near unto the wrack as was 
possible for us, looking out if by good hap we might espy 
any of them. 

This was a heavy and grievous event, to lose at one blow 
our chief ship freighted with great provision, gathered to- 
gether with much travail, care, long time, and difficulty ; but 
more was the loss of our men, which perished to the number 
almost of a hundred souls. Amongst whom was drowned a 
learned man, a Hungarian," born in the city of Buda, called 
thereof Btidceus, who, of piety and zeal to good attempts, 
adventured in this action, minding to record in the Latin 
tongue the gests and things worthy of remembrance, hap- 
pening in this discovery, to the honour of our nation, the 
same being adorned with the eloquent style of this orator 
and rare poet of our time. 

Here also perished our Saxon refiner and discoverer of 
inestimable riches, as it was left amongst some of us in un- 
doubted hope. No less heavy was the loss of the captain, 
Maurice Brown, a virtuous, honest, and discreet gentleman, 
overseen only in liberty given late before to men that ought 
to have been restrained, who showed himself a man resolved, 
and never unprepared for death, as by his last act of this 
tragedy appeared, by report of them that escaped this Avrack 
miraculously, as shall be hereafter declared. For when all 
hope was past of recovering the ship, and that men began to 
give over, and to save themselves, the captain was advised 
before to shift also for his life, by the pinnace at the stern 
of the ship; but refusing that counsel, he would not give 
example with the first to leave the ship, but used all means 
to exhort his people not to despair, nor so to leave off their 
labour, choosing rather to die than to incur infamy by for 
saking his charge, which then might be thought to have 
perished through his default, showing an ill precedent unto 
his men, by leaving the ship first himself. With this mind 
he mounted upon the highest deck, where he attended im- 
minent death, and unavoidable ; how long, I leave it to God, 
who withdraweth not his comfort from his servants at such 

In the mean season, certain, to the number of fourteen 

^ Stephen Parmenius. 


persons, leaped into a small pinnace, the bigness of a Thames 
barge, which was made in the Newfoundland, cut off the 
rope wherewith it was towed, and committed themselves to 
God's mercy, amidst the storm, and rage of sea and winds, 
destitute of food, not so much as a drop of fresh water. The 
boat seeming overcharged in foul weather with company, 
Edward Headly, a valiant soldier, and well reputed of his 
company, preferring the greater to the lesser, thought better 
that some of them perished than all, made this motion, to cast 
lots, and them to be thrown overboard upon whom the lots 
fell, thereby to lighten the boat, which otherways seemed 
impossible to live, [and] offered himself with the first, con- 
tent to take his adventure gladly : which nevertheless Richard 
Clarke, that was master of the Admiral, and one of this 
number, refused, advising to abide God's pleasure, who was 
able to save all, as well as a few. The boat was carried 
before the wind, continuing six days and nights in the 
ocean, and arrived at last with the men, alive, but weak, 
upon the Newfoundland, saving that the foresaid Headly, 
who had been late sick, and another called of us Brazil, of 
his travel into those countries, died by the way, famished, 
and less able to hold out than those of better health .... 
Thus whom God delivered from drowning, he appointed to 
be famished; who doth give limits to man's times, and 
ordaineth the manner and circumstance of dying: whom, 
again, he will preserve, neither sea nor famine can confound. 
For those that arrived upon the Newfoundland were brought 
into France by certain Frenchmen, then being upon the 

After this heavy chance, we continued in beating the sea 
up and down, expecting when the weather would clear up 
that we «light yet bear in with the land, which we judged 
not far off either the continent or some island. For we 
many times, and in sundry places found ground at 50, 45, 40 
fathoms, and less. The ground coming upon our lead, being 
sometime oozy sand and other while a broad shell, with a 
little sand about it. 

Our people lost courage daily after this ill success, the 
weather continuing thick and blustering, with increase of 
cold, winter drawing on, which took from them all hope of 


amendment, settling an assurance of worse weather to grow 
upon us every day. The leeside of us lay full of flats and 
dangers, inevitable if the wind blew hard at south. Some 
again doubted we were ingulfed in the Bay of St. Lawrence, 
the coast full of dangers, and unto us unknown. But above 
all, provision waxed scant, and hope of supply was gone 
with loss of our Admiral. Those in the frigate were already- 
pinched with spare allowance, and want of clothes chiefly: 
whereupon they besought the General to return to England, 
before they all perished. And to them of the Golden Hind 
they made signs of distress, pointing to their mouths, and to 
their clothes thin and ragged : then immediately they also of 
the Golden Hind grew to be of the same opinion and desire 
to return home. 

The former reasons having also moved the General to 
have compassion of his poor men, in whom he saw no want 
of good will, but of means fit to perform the action they 
came for, [he] resolved upon retire : and calling the captain 
and master of the Hind, he yielded them many reasons, en- 
forcing this unexpected return, withal protesting himself 
greatly satisfied with that he had seen and knew already, 
reiterating these words : Be content, we have seen enough, 
and take no care of expense past : I will set you forth royally 
the next spring, if God send us safe home. Therefore I 
pray you let us no longer strive here, where we fight against 
the elements. Omitting circumstance, how unwillingly the 
captain and master of the Hind condescended to this motion, 
his own company can testify; yet comforted with the Gen- 
eral's promise of a speedy return at spring, and induced by 
other apparent reasons, proving an impossibility to ac- 
complish the action at that time, it was concluded on all 
hands to retire. 

So upon Saturday in the afternoon, the 31. of August, we 
changed our course, and returned back for England. At 
\vhich very instant, even in winding about, there passed 
along between us and towards the land which we now for- 
sook a very lion to our seeming, in shape, hair, and colour, 
not swimming after the manner of a beast by moving of his 
feet, but rather sliding upon the water with his whole body, 
excepting the legs, in sight, neither yet diving under, and 


again rising above the water, as the manner is of whales, 
dolphins, tunnies, porpoises, and all other fish: but confi- 
dently showing himself above water without hiding: not- 
withstanding, we presented ourselves in open view and ges- 
ture to amaze him, as all creatures will be commonly at a 
sudden gaze and sight of men. Thus he passed along turn- 
ing his head to and fro, yawing and gaping wide, with ugly 
demonstration of long teeth, and glaring eyes; and to bid 
us a farewell, coming right against the Hind, he sent forth 
a horrible voice, roaring or bellowing as doth a lion, which 
spectacle we all beheld so far as we were able to discern the 
same, as men prone to wonder at every strange thing, as 
this doubtless was, to see a lion in the ocean sea, or fish in 
shape of a lion. What opinion others had thereof, and 
chiefly the General himself, I forbear to deliver: but he took 
it for bonuni omen, rejoicing that he was to war against 
such an enemy, if it were the devil. The wind was large for 
England at our return, but very high, and the sea rough, 
insomuch as the frigate, wherein the General went, was al- 
most swallowed up. 

Monday in the afternoon we passed in sight of Cape Race, 
having made as much way in little more than two days and 
nights back again, as before we had done in eight days from 
Cape Race unto the place where our ship perished. Which 
hindrance thitherward, and speed back again, is to be im- 
puted unto the swift current, as well as to the winds, which 
we had more large in our return. This Monday the General 
came aboard the Hind, to have the surgeon of the Hind to 
dress his foot, which he hurt by treading upon a nail : at 
which time we comforted each other with hope of hard suc- 
cess to be all past, and of the good to come. So agreeing to 
carry out lights always by night, that we might keep to- 
gether, he departed into his frigate, being by no means to 
be entreated to tarry in the Hind, which had been more for 
his security. Immediately after followed a sharp storm, 
which we overpassed for that time, praised be God. 

The weather fair, the General came aboard the Hi7id 
again, to make merry together with the captain, master, and 
company, which was the last meeting, and continued there 
from morning until night. During which time there passed 


sundry discourses touching affairs past and to come, lament- 
ing greatly the loss of his great ship, more of the men, but 
most of all his books and notes, and what else I know not, 
for which he was out of measure grieved, the same doubtless 
being some matter of more importance than his books, which 
I could not draw from him : yet by circumstance I gathered 
the same to be the ore which Daniel the Saxon had brought 
unto him in the Newfoundland. Whatsoever it was, the re- 
membrance touched him so deep as, not able to contain him- 
self, he beat his boy in great rage, even at the same time, 
so long after the miscarrying of the great ship, because upon 
a fair day, when we were becalmed upon the coast of the 
Newfoundland near unto Cape Race, he sent his boy aboard 
the Admiral to fetch certain things: amongst which, this 
being chief, was yet forgotten and left behind. After which 
time he could never convenientl)^ send again aboard the great 
ship, much less he doubted her ruin so near at hand. 

Herein my opinion was better confirmed diversely, and by 
sundry conjectures, which maketh me have the greater hope 
of this rich mine. For whereas the General had never be- 
fore good conceit of these north parts of the world, now his 
mind was wholly fixed upon the Newfoundland. And as be- 
fore he refused not to grant assignments liberally to them that 
required the same into these north parts, now he became con- 
trarily affected, refusing to make any so large grants, es- 
pecially of St. John's, which certain English merchants 
made suit for, offering to employ their money and travail 
upon the same yet neither by their own suit, nor of others 
of his own company, whom he seemed willing to pleasure, 
it could be obtained. Also laying down his determination 
in the spring following for disposing of his voyage then to 
be re-attempted: he assigned the captain and master of the 
Golden Hind unto the south discovery, and reserved unto 
himself the north, affirming that this voyage had won his 
heart from the south, and tha^ he Avas now become a north- 
ern man altogether. 

Last, being demanded what means he had, at his arrival 
in England, to compass the charges of so great preparation 
as he intended to make the next spring, having determined 
upon two fleets, one for the south, another for the north; 


Leave that to me, he replied, / will ask a penny of no man. 
I will bring good tidings unto her Majesty, who will be so 
gracious to lend me £10,000 ; willing us therefore to be of 
good cheer; for he did thank God, he said, with all his heart 
for that he had seen, the same being enough for tis all, and 
that we needed not to seek any further. And these last words 
he would often repeat, with demonstration of great fervency 
of mind, being himself very confident and settled in belief 
of inestimable good by this voyage; which the greater 
number of his followers nevertheless mistrusted altogether, 
not being made partakers of those secrets, which the Gen- 
eral kept unto himself. Yet all of them that are living may 
be witnesses of his words and protestations, which sparingly 
I have delivered. 

Leaving the issue of this good hope unto God, who know- 
eth the truth only, and can at His good pleasure bring the 
same to light, I will hasten to the end of this tragedy, which 
must be knit up in the person of our General. And as it 
was God's ordinance upon him, even so the vehement per- 
suasion and entreaty of his friends could nothing avail to 
divert hira of a wilful resolution of going through in his 
frigate; which was overcharged upon the decks with fights, 
nettings, and small artillery, too cumbersome for so small a 
boat that was to pass through the ocean sea at that season 
of the year, when by course we might expect much storm of 
foul weather. Whereof, indeed, we had enough. 

But when he was entreated by the captain, master, and 
other his well-willers of the Hind not to venture in the 
frigate, this was his answer: / will not forsake my little 
company going homeward, with whotn I have passed so 
many storms and perils. And in very truth he was urged 
to be so over hard by hard reports given of him that he 
was afraid of the sea; albeit this was rather rashness than 
advised resolution, to prefer the wind of a vain report to 
the weight of his own life. Seeing he would not bend to 
reason, he had provision out of the Hind, such as was want- 
ing aboard his frigate. And so we committed him to God's 
protection, and set him aboard his pinnace, we being more 
than 300 leagues onward of our way home. 

By that time we had brought the Islands of Azores south 


of us; yet we then keeping much to the north, until we had 
got into the height and elevation of England, we met with 
very foul weather and terrible seas, breaking short and high, 
pyramid- wise. The reason whereof seemed to proceed either 
of hilly grounds high and low within the sea, as we see 
hills and vales upon the land, upon which the seas do mount 
and fall, or else the cause proceedeth of diversity of winds, 
shifting often in sundry points, all which having power to 
move the great ocean, which again is not presently settled, 
so many seas do encounter together, as there had been di- 
versity of winds. Howsoever it cometh to pass, men which 
all their lifetime had occupied the sea never saw more out- 
rageous seas. We had also upon our mainyard an appari- 
tion of a little fire by night, which seamen do call Castor 
and Pollux. But we had only one, which they take an evil 
sign of more tempest; the same is usual in storms. 

Monday, the 9. of September, in the afternoon, the frigate 
was near cast away, oppressed by Λvaves, yet at that time re- 
covered; and giving forth signs of joy, the General, sitting 
abaft with a book in his hand, cried out to us in the Hind, 
so oft as we did approach within hearing, We are as near 
to heaven by sea as by land! Reiterating the same speech, 
well beseeming a soldier, resolute in Jesus Christ, as I 
can testify he was. 

The same Monday night, about twelve of the clock, or 
not long after, the frigate being ahead of us in the Golden 
Hind, suddenly her lights were out, whereof as it were in 
a moment we lost the sight, and withal our watch cried 
the General was cast away, which v^-as too true. For in that 
moment the frigate was devoured and swallowed up of 
the sea. Yet still we looked out all that night, and ever 
after until we arrived upon the coast of England; omitting 
no small sail at sea, unto which we gave not the tokens be- 
tween us agreed upon to have perfect knowledge of each 
other, if we should at any time be separated. 

In great torment of weather and peril of drowning it 
pleased God to send safe home the Golden Hind, which 
arrived in Falmouth the 22. of September, being Sunday, 
not without as great danger escaped in a flaw coming from 
the south-east, with such thick mist that we could not discern 


land to put in right with the haven. From Falmouth we 
went to Dartmouth, and lay there at anchor before the 
Range, while the captain went aland to enquire if there had 
been any news of the frigate, which, sailing well, might 
happily have been before us; also to certify Sir John Gilbert, 
brother unto the General, of our hard success, whom the 
captain desired, while his men were yet aboard him, and were 
witnesses of all occurrences in that voyage, it might please 
him to take the examination of every person particularly, in 
discharge of his and their faithful endeavour. Sir John 
Gilbert refused so to do, holding himself satisfied with report 
made by the captain, and not altogether despairing of his 
brother's safety, offered friendship and courtesy to the 
captain and his company, requiring to have his bark brought 
into the harbour; in furtherance whereof a boat was sent 
to help to tow her in. 

Nevertheless, when the captain returned aboard his ship, 
he found his men bent to depart every man to his home ; and 
then the wind serving to proceed higher upon the coast, 
they demanded money to carry them home, some to London, 
others to Harwich, and elsewhere, if the barque should be 
carried into Dartmouth and they discharged so far from 
home, or else to take benefit of the wind, then serving to 
draw nearer home, which should be a less charge unto the 
captain, and great ease unto the men, having else far to go. 
Reason accompanied with necessity persuaded the captain, 
who sent his lawful excuse and cause of this sudden depar- 
ture unto Sir John Gilbert, by the boat of Dartmouth, and 
from thence the Golden Hind departed and took harbour 
at Weymouth. All the men tired with the tediousness of 
so unprofitable a voyage to their seeming, in which their 
long expense of time, much toil and labour, hard diet, and 
continual hazard of life was unrecompensed; their captain 
nevertheless by his great charges impaired greatly thereby, 
yet comforted in the goodness of God, and His undoubted 
providence following him in all that voyage, as it doth 
always those at other times whosoever ha\^e confidence in 
Him alone. Yet have we more near feeling and perseverance 
of His powerful hand and protection when God doth bring 
us together with others into one same peril, in which He 


leaveth them and delivereth us, making us thereby the be- 
holders, but not partakers, of their ruin. Even so, amongst 
very many difficulties, discontentments, mutinies, con- 
spiracies, sicknesses, mortality, spoilings, and wracks by 
sea, which were afflictions more than in so small a fleet of 
so short a time may be supposed, albeit true in every par- 
ticularity, as partly by the former relation may be collected, 
and some I suppressed with silence for their sakes living, 
it pleased God to support this company, of which only one 
man died of a malady inveterate, and long infested, the rest 
kept together in reasonable contentment and concord, begin- 
ning, continuing, and ending the voyage, which none else 
did accomplish, either not pleased with the action, or im- 
patient of wants, or prevented by death. 

Thus have I delivered the contents of the enterprise 
and last action of Sir Humfrey Gilbert, Knight, faithfully, 
for so much as I thought meet to be published ; wherein may 
always appear, though he be extinguished, some sparks of 
his virtues, he remaining firm and resolute in a purpose by 
all pretence honest and godly, as was this, to discover, 
possess, and to reduce unto the service of God and Christian 
piety those remote and heathen countries of America not 
actually possessed by Christians, and most rightly apper- 
taining unto the crown of England, unto the which as his 
zeal deserveth high commendation, even so he may justly be 
taxed of temerity, and presumption rather, in two respects. 
First, when yet there was only probability, not a certain 
and determinate place of habitation selected, neither any 
demonstration if commodity there in esse, to induce his fol- 
lowers ; nevertheless, he both was too prodigal of his own 
patrimony and too careless of other men's expenses to em- 
ploy both his and their substance upon a ground imagined 
good. The which falling, very like his associates were 
promised, and made it their best reckoning, to be salved 
some other way, which pleased not God to prosper in his 
first and great preparation. Secondly, when by his former 
preparation he was enfeebled of ability and credit to per- 
form his designments, as it were impatient to abide in 
expectation better opportunity, and means which God might 
raise, he thrust himself again into the action, for which he 


was not fit, presuming the cause pretended on God's behalf 
would carry him to the desired end. Into which having 
thus made re-entry, he could not yield again to withdraw, 
though he saw no encouragement to proceed ; lest his credit, 
foiled in his first attempt, in a second should utterly be dis- 
graced. Between extremities he made a right adventure, 
putting all to God and good fortune ; and, which was worst, 
refused not to entertain every person and means whatso- 
ever, to furnish out this expedition, the success whereof 
hath been declared. 

But such is the infinite bounty of God, who from every 
evil deriveth good. For besides that fruit may grow in 
time of our travelling into those north-west lands, the 
crosses, turmoils, and afflictions, both in the preparation and 
execution of this voyage, did correct the intemperate 
humours which before we noted to be in this gentleman, 
and made unsavoury and less delightful his other manifold 
virtues. Then as he was refined, and made nearer drawing 
unto the image of God, so it pleased the Divine will to re- 
sume him unto Himself, whither both his and every other 
high and noble mind have always aspired. 





Sir Walter Raleigh may he taken as the great typical figure 
of the age of Elisabeth. Courtier and statesman, soldier and 
sailor, scientist and man of letters, he engaged in almost all the 
main lines of public activity in his time, and was distinguished 
in them all. 

His father was a Devonshire gentleman of property, connected 
with many of the distinguished families of the south of England. 
Walter was born about 1552 and was educated at Oxford. He 
first saw military service in the Huguenot army in France in 
1369, and in 1578 engaged, with his half-brother. Sir Humphrey 
Gilbert, in the first of his expeditions against the Spaniards. 
After some service in Ireland, he attracted the attention of the 
Queen, and rapidly rose to the perilous position of her chief 
favorite. With her approval, he fitted out two expeditions for 
the colonization of Virginia, neither of which did his royal mis- 
tress permit him to lead in person, and neither of which suc- 
ceeded in establishing a permanent settlement. 

After about six years of high favor, Raleigh found his posi- 
tion at court endangered by the rivalry of Essex, and in 1592, on 
returning from convoying a squadron he had fitted out against 
the Spanish, he was thrown into the Tower by the orders of the 
Queen, who had discovered an intrigue between him and one of 
her ladies whom he subsequently married. He was ultimately 
released, engaged in various naval exploits, and in 1594 sailed for 
South America on the voyage described in the following narrative. 

On the death of Elizabeth, Raleigh's misfortunes increased. 
He was accused of treason against James I, condemned, re- 
prieved, and imprisoned for twelve years, during which he wrote 
his "History of the World," and engaged in scientific researches. 
In i6j6 he was liberated, to make another attempt to find the 
gold mine in Venezuela; but the expedition was disastrous, and, 
on his return, Raleigh was executed on the old charge in 1618. 
In his vices as in his virtues, Raleigh is a thorough representa- 
tive of the great adventurers who laid the foundaiions of the 
British Empire. 



The Discovery of the large, rich, and beautiful Empire of Guiana ; 
with a Relation of the gteaf and golden City of Manoa, which 
the Spaniards call El Dorado, and the Provinces of Emeria, 
Aromaia, Amapaia, and other Countries, with their rivers, adjoin- 
ing. Performed in the year JS95 by Sir WALTER RALEIGH, 
Knight, Captain of her Majesty's Guard, Lord Warden of the 
Stannaries, and her Highness' Lieutenant-general of the 
County of Cornwall. 

To the Right Honourable my singular good Lord and kinsman 
CHARLES HOWARD, Knight of the Garter, Baron, and Coun- 
cillor, and of the Admirals of England the most renowned ; and 
to the Right Honourable Sir ROBERT CECIL, Knight, Coun- 
cillor in her Highness' Privy Councils. 

FOR your Honours' many honourable and friendly parts, I 
have hitherto only returned promises; and now, for answer 
of both your adventures, I have sent you a bundle of pa- 
pers, which I have divided between your Lordship and Sir Robert 
Cecil, in these two respects chiefly ; first, for that it is reason that 
wasteful factors, when they have consumed such stocks as they 
had in trust, do yield some colour for the same in their account; 
secondly, for that I am assured that whatsoever shall be done, or 
written, by me, shall need a double protection and defence. The 
trial that I had of both your loves, when I was left of all, but of 
malice and revenge, makes me still presume that you will be 
pleased (knowing what little power I had to perform aught, and 
the great advantage of forewarned enemies) to answer that out 
of knowledge, which others shall but object out of malice. In 
my more happy times as I did especially honour you both, so I 
found that your loves sought me out in the darkest shadow of 
adversity, and the same affection which accompanied my better 
fortune soared not away from me in my many miseries; all 
which though I cannot requite, yet I shall ever acknowledge ; and 
the great debt which I have no power to pay, I can do no more 



for a time but confess to be due. It is true that as my errors 
were great, so they have yielded very grievous effects; and if 
aught might have been deserved in former times, to have coun- 
terpoised any part of offences, the fruit thereof, as it seemeth, 
was long before fallen from the tree, and the dead stock only 
remained. I did therefore, even in the winter of my life, under- 
take these travails, fitter for bodies less blasted with misfortunes, 
for men of greater ability, and for minds of better encouragement, 
that thereby, if it were possible, I might recover but the modera- 
tion of excess, and the least taste of the greatest plenty formerly 
possessed. If I had known other way to win, if I had imagined 
how greater adventures might have regained, if I could conceive 
what farther means I might yet use but even to appease so pow- 
erful displeasure, I would not doubt but for one year more to hold 
fast my soul in my teeth till it were performed. Of that little 
remain I had, I have wasted in effect all herein. I have under- 
gone many constructions; I have been accompanied with many 
sorrows, with labour, hunger, heat, sickness, and peril ; it ap- 
peareth, notwithstanding, that I made no other bravado of going 
to the sea, than was meant, and that I was never hidden in Corn- 
wall, or elsewhere, as was supposed. They have grossly belied 
me that forejudged that I would rather become a servant to the 
Spanish king than return; and the rest were much mistaken, 
who would have persuaded that I was too easeful and sensual 
to undertake a journey of so great travail. But if what I have 
done receive the gracious construction of a painful pilgrimage, 
and purchase the least remission, I shall think all too little, and 
that there were wanting to the rest many miseries. But if both 
the times past, the present, and what may be in the future, do 
all by one grain of gall continue in eternal distaste, I do not 
then know whether I should bewail myself, either for my too 
much travail and expense, or condemn myself for doing less than 
that which can deserve nothing. From myself I have deserved 
no thanks, for I am returned a beggar, and withered; but that 
I might have bettered my poor estate, it shall appear from the 
following discourse, if I had not only respected her Majesty's 
future honour and riches. 

It became not the former fortune, in which I once lived, to go 
journeys of picory ;^ it had sorted ill with the offices of honour, 

1 Fr. picoree (marauding). 


whicli by her Majesty's grace I hold this day in England, to run 
from cape to cape and from place to place, for the pillage of 
ordinary prizes. Many years since I had knowledge, by relation, 
of that mighty, rich, and beautiful empire of Guiana, and of that 
great and golden city, which the Spaniards call El Dorado, and 
the naturals Manoa, which city was conquered, re-edified, and en- 
larged by a younger son of Guayna-capac, Emperor of Peru, at 
such time as Francisco Pizarro and others conquered the said 
empire from his two elder brethren, Guascar and Atabalipa, both 
then contending for the same, the one being favoured by the 
orejones of Cusco, the other by the people oi • Caxamalca. I 
sent my servant Jacob Whiddon, the year before, to get knowl- 
edge of the passages, and I had some light from Captain Parker, 
sometime my servant, and now attending on your Lordship, that 
such a place there was to the southward of the great bay of 
Charuas, or Gtianipa: but I found that it was 600 miles farther 
oi¥ than they supposed, and many impediments to them unknown 
and unheard. After I had displanted Don Antonio de Berreo, 
who was upon the same enterprise, leaving my ships at Trinidad, 
at the port called Curiapan, I wandered 400 miles into the said 
country by land and river; the particulars I will leave to the 
following discourse. 

The country hath more quantity of gold, by manifold, than 
the best parts of the Indies, or Peru. All the most of the kings 
of the borders are already become her Majesty's vassals, and 
seem to desire nothing more than her Majesty's protection and 
the return of the English nation. It hath another ground and 
assurance of riches and glory than the voyages of the West 
Indies; an easier way to invade the best parts thereof than by 
the common course. The king of Spain is not so impoverished 
by taking three or four port towns in America as we suppose; 
neither are the riches of Peru or Nueva Espana so left by the 
sea side as it can be easily washed away with a great flood, or 
spring tide, or left dry upon the sands on a low ebb. The port 
towns are few and poor in respect of the rest within the land, 
and are of little defence, and are only rich when the fleets are to 
receive the treasure for Spain; and we might think the Spaniards 
very simple, having so many horses and slaves, if they could 
not upon two days' warning carry all the gold they have into the 
land, and far enough from the reach of our footmen, especially 


the Indies being, as they are for the most part, so mountainous, 
full of woods, rivers, and marishes. In the port towns of the 
province of Venezuela, as Cumana, Coro, and St. lago (whereof 
Coro and St. lago were taken by Captain Preston, and Cumana 
and St. Josepho by us) we found not the value of one real of plate 
in either. But the cities of Barquasimeta, Valencia, St. Sebastian, 
Cororo, St. Lucia, Laguna, Maracaiba, and Truxillo, are not so 
easily invaded. Neither doth the burning of those on the coast 
impoverish the king of Spain any one ducat; and if we sack 
the River of Hacha, St. Martha, and Carthagena, which are the 
ports of Nuevo Reyno and Popayan, there are besides within the 
land, which are indeed rich and prosperous, the towns and cities 
of Merida, Lagrita, St. Christophoro, the great cities of Pam- 
plona, Santa Fe de Bogota, Tunxa, and Mozo, where the emeralds 
are found, the towns and cities of Marequita, Veles, la Villa de 
Leiva, Paliiia, Honda, Angostura, the great city of Timana, 
Tocaima, St. Aguila, Pasto, [St.'] J ago, the great city of Popayan 
itself, Los Remedios, and the rest. If we take the ports and vil- 
lages within the bay of Uraba in the kingdom or rivers of Darien 
and Caribana, the cities and towns of St. Juan de Rodas, of 
Cassaris, of Antioehia, Caramanta, Cali, and Anserma have gold 
enough to pay the king's part, and are not easily invaded by 
way of the ocean. Or if Nombre de Dios and Panama be taken, 
in the province of Castilla del Oro, and the villages upon the rivers 
of Cenu and Chagre; Peru hath, besides those, and besides the 
magnificent cities of Quito and Lima, so many islands, ports, 
cities, and mines as if I should name them with the rest it would 
seem incredible to the reader. Of all which, because I have 
written a particular treatise of the West Indies, I will omit the 
repetition at this time, seeing that in the said treatise I have 
anatomized the rest of the sea towns as well of Nicaragua, Yu- 
catan, Nueva Espaiia, and the islands, as those of the inland, and 
by what means they may be best invaded, as far as any mean 
judgment may comprehend. 

But I hope it shall appear that there is a way found to answer 
every man's longing; a better Indies for her Majesty than the 
king of Spain hath any; which if it shall please her Highness 
to undertake, I shall most willingly end the rest of my days in 
following the same. If it be left to the spoil and sackage of 
common persons, if the love and service of so many nations be 


despised, so great riches and so mighty an empire refused; I hope 
her Majesty will yet take my humble desire and my labour 
therein in gracious part, which, if it had not been in respect of 
her Highness' future honour and riches, could have laid hands 
on and ransomed many of the kings and caciqui of the country, 
and have had a reasonable proportion of gold for their redemp- 
tion. But I have chosen rather to bear the burden of poverty 
than reproach ; and rather to endure a second travail, and the 
chances thereof, than to have defaced an enterprise of so great 
assurance, until I knew whether it pleased God to put a disposi- 
tion in her princely and royal heart either to follow or forslow" 
the same. I will therefore leave it to His ordinance that hath 
only power in all things ; and do humbly pray that your honours 
will excuse such errors as, without the defence of art, overrun 
in every part the following discourse, in which I have neither 
studied phrase, form, nor fashion ; that you will be pleased to 
esteem me as your own, though over dearly bought, and I shall 
ever remain ready to do you all honour and service. 

" Neglect, decline (lose through sloth). 


BECAUSE there have been divers opinions conceived of the 
gold ore brought from Guiana, and for that an alderman 
of London and an officer of her Majesty's mint hath given 
out that the same is of no price, I have thought good by the addi- 
tion of these lines to give answer as well to the said malicious 
slander as to other objections. It is true that while we abode 
at the island of Trinidad I was informed by an Indian that not 
far from the port where we anchored there were found certain 
mineral stones which they esteemed to be gold, and were there- 
unto persuaded the rather for that they had seen both English 
and Frenchmen gather and embark some quantities thereof. 
Upon this likelihood I sent forty men, and gave order that 
each one should bring a stone of that mine, to make trial of 
the goodness ; which being performed, I assured them at their 
return that the same was marcasite, and of no riches or value. 
Notwithstanding, divers, trusting more to their own sense 
than to my opinion, kept of the said marcasite, and have tried 
thereof since my return, in divers places. In Guiana itself 
I never saw marcasite ; but all the rocks, mountains, all stones 
in the plains, woods, and by the rivers' sides, are in effect 
thorough-shining, and appear marvellous rich ; which, being 
tried to be no marcasite, are the true signs of rich minerals, but 
are no other than El madre del oro, as the Spaniards term them, 
which is the mother of gold, or, as it is said by others, the scum 
of gold. Of divers sorts of these many of my company brought 
also into England, every one taking the fairest for the best, which 
is not general. For mine own part, I did not countermand any 
man's desire or opinion, and I could have afforded them little if 
I should have denied them the pleasing of their own fancies 
therein; but I was resolved that gold must be found either in 
grains, separate from the stone, as it is in most of the rivers in 
Guiana, or else in a kind of hard stone, which we call the 



white spar, of which I saw divers hills, and in sundry places, 
but had neither time nor men, nor instruments fit for labour. 
Near unto one of the rivers I found of the said white spar or 
flint a very great ledge or bank, which I endeavoured to break 
by all the means I could, because there appeared on the outside 
some small grains of gold ; but finding no mean to work the 
same upon the upper part, seeking the sides and circuit of the 
said rock, I found a clift in the same, from whence with daggers, 
and with the head of an axe, we got out some small quantity 
thereof; of which kind of white stone, wherein gold is engen- 
dered, we saw divers hills and rocks in every part of Guiana 
wherein we travelled. Of this there have been made many trials; 
and in London it was first assayed by Master Westwood, a refiner 
dwelling in Wood Street, and it held after the rate of twelve or 
thirteen thousand pounds a ton. Another sort was afterward 
tried by Master Bulmar, and Master Dimock, assay-master; and 
it held after the rate of three and twenty thousand pounds a ton. 
There was some of it again tried by Master Palmer, Comptroller 
of the Mint, and Master Dimock in Goldsmith's Hall, and it held 
after six and twenty thousand and nine hundred pounds a ton. 
There was also at the same time, and by the same persons, a 
trial made of the dust of the said mine ; which held eight pounds 
and six ounces weight of gold in the hundred. There was like- 
wise at the same time a trial of an image of copper made in 
Guiana, which held a third part of gold, besides divers trials 
made in the country, and by others in London. But because there 
came ill with the good, and belike the said alderman was not pre- 
sented with the best, it hath pleased him therefore to scandal all 
the rest, and to deface the enterprise as much as in him lieth. 
It hath also been concluded by divers that if there had been 
any such ore in Guiana, and the same discovered, that I would 
have brought home a greater quantity thereof. First, I was 
not bound to satisfy any man of the quantity, but onlj' such as 
adventured, if any store had been returned thereof; but it is 
very true that had all their mountains been of massy gold it was 
impossible for us to have made any longer stay to have wrought 
the same; and whosoever hath seen with what strength of stone 
the best gold ore is environed, he will not think it easy to be 
had out in heaps, and especially by us, who had neither men, in- 
struments, nor time, as it is said before, to perform the same. 


There were on this discovery no less than an hundred persons, 
who can all witness that when we passed any branch of the river 
to view the land within, and stayed from our boats but six 
hours, we were driven to wade to the eyes at our return; and 
if we attempted the same the day following, it was impossible 
either to ford it, or to swim it, both by reason of the swiftness, 
and also for that the borders were so pestered with fast woods, 
as neither boat nor man could find place either to land or to 
embark; for in June, July, August, and September it is im- 
possible to navigate any of those rivers; for such is the furj' 
of the current, and there are so many trees and woods overflown, 
as if any boat but touch upon any tree or stake it is impossible 
to save any one person therein. And ere we departed the land it 
ran with such SAviftness as we drave down, most commonly 
against the wind, little less than an hundred miles a day. Besides, 
our vessels were no other than wherries, one little barge, a small 
cock-boat, and a bad galiota which we framed in haste for that 
purpose at Trinidad; and those little boats had nine or ten men 
apiece, with all their victuals and arms. It is further true that 
we were about four hundred miles from our ships, and had 
been a moiith from them, which also we left weakly manned 
in an open road, and had promised our return in fifteen days. 

Others have devised that the same ore was had from Barbary, 
and that we carried it with us into Guiana. Surely the singularity 
of that device I do not well comprehend. For mine own part, I 
am not so much in love with these long voyages as to devise 
thereby to cozen myself, to lie hard, to fare worse, to be sub- 
jected to perils, to diseases, to ill savours, to be parched and 
withered, and withal to sustain the care and labour of such an 
enterprise, except the same had more comfort than the fetching 
of marcasite in Guiana, or buying of gold ore in Barbary. But 
I hope the better sort will judge me by themselves, and that the 
way of deceit is not the way of honour or good opinion. I have 
herein consumed much time, and many crowns; and I had no 
other respect or desire than to serve her Majesty and my country 
thereby. If the Spanish nation had been of like belief to these 
detractors wc should little have feared or doubted their attempts, 
wherewith we now are daily threatened. But if we now consider 
of the actions both of Charles the Fifth, who had the maidenhead 
of Peru and the abundant treasures of Atabalipa, together with 


the affairs of the Spanish king now living, what territories he 
hath purchased, what he hath added to the acts of his predeces- 
sors, how many kingdoms he hath endangered, how many armies, 
garrisons, and navies he hath, and doth maintain, the great losses 
which he hath repaired, as in Eighty-eight above an hundred sail 
of great ships with their artillery, and that no year is less in- 
fortunate, but that many vessels, treasures, and people are de- 
voured, and yet notwithstanding he beginneth again like a storm 
to threaten shipwrack to us all; we shall find that these abilities 
rise not from the trades of sacks and Seville oranges, nor from 
aught else that either Spain, Portugal, or any of his other prov- 
inces produce; it is his Indian gold that endangereth and dis- 
turbeth all the nations of Europe; it purchaseth intelligence, 
creepeth into counsels, and setteth bound loyalty at liberty in the 
greatest monarchies of Europe. If the Spanish king can keep 
us from foreign enterprises, and from the impeachment of his 
trades, either by offer of invasion, or by besieging us in Britain, 
Ireland, or elsewhere, he hath then brought the work of our peril 
in great forwardness. 

Those princes that abound in treasure have great advantages 
over the rest, if they once constrain them to a defensive war, 
where they are driven once a year or oftener to cast lots for 
their own garments ; and from all such shall all trades and inter- 
course be taken away, to the general loss and impoverishment 
of the kingdom and commonweal so reduced. Besides, when 
our men are constrained to fight, it hath not the like hope as 
when they are pressed and encouraged by th, desire of spoil and 
riches. Farther, it is to be doubte ' how those that in time of 
victory seem to affect their neighlour nations will remain after 
the first view of misfortunes or ill success ; to trust, also, to the 
doubtfulness of a battle is but ? fea-ful and uncertain adventure, 
seeing therein fortune is as likely to prevail as virtue. It shall 
not be necessary to allege all that might be said, and therefore I 
will thus conclude; that whatsoever kingdom shall be enforced 
to defend itself may be compared to a body dangerously diseased, 
which for a season may be preserved with vulgar medicines, but 
in a short time, and by little and little, the same must needs fall 
to the ground and be dissolved. I have therefore laboured all 
my life, both according to my small power and persuasion, to 
advance all those attempts that might either promise return 


of profit to ourselves, or at least be a let and impeachment to the 
quiet course and plentiful trades of the Spanish nation; who, 
in my weak judgement, by such a war were as easily endangered 
and brought from his powerfulness as any prince in Europe, if it 
be considered from how many kingdoms and nations his revenues 
are gathered, and those so weak in their own beings and so far 
severed from mutual succour. But because such a preparation 
and resolution is not to be hoped for in haste, and that the time 
which our enemies embrace cannot be had again to advantage, I 
will hope that these province*, and that empire now by me dis- 
covered, shall suffice to enable her Majesty and the whole king- 
dom with no less quantities of treasure than the king of Spain 
hath in all the Indies, East and West, which he possesseth ; which 
if the same be considered and followed, ere the Spaniards enforce 
the same, and if her Majesty will undertake it, I will be con- 
tented to lose her Highness' favour and good opinion for ever, 
and my life withal, if the same be not found rather to exceed 
than to equal whatsoever is in this discourse promised and de- 
clared. I will now refer the reader to the following discourse, 
with the hope that the perilous and chargeable labours and en- 
deavours of such as thereby seek the profit and honour of her 
Majesty, and the English nation, shall by men of quality and 
virtue receive such construction and good acceptance as them- 
selves would like to be rewarded withal in the like. 


ON Thursday, the sixth of February, in the year 1595, 
we departed England, and the Sunday following had 
sight of the north cape of Spain, the wind for the most 
part continuing prosperous; we passed in sight of the Bur- 
lings, and the Rock, and so onwards for the Canaries, and fell 
with Fuertevcntura the 17. of the same month, where we 
spent two or three days, and relieved our companies with 
some fresh meat. From thence we coasted by the Grand Ca- 
naria, and so to Teneriife, and stayed there for the Lion's 
Whelp, your Lordship's ship, and for Captain Amyas Preston 
and the rest. But when after seven or eight days we found them 
not, we departed and directed our course for Trinidad, with 
mine own ship, and a small barque of Captain Cross's only; 
for we had before lost sight of a small galego on the coast 
of Spain, which came with us from Plymouth. We ar- 
rived at Trinidad the 22. of March, casting anchor at Point 
Curiapan, which the Spaniards call Punta de Gallo, which is 
situate in eight degrees or thereabouts. We abode there 
four or five days, and in all that time we came not to the 
speech of any Indian or Spaniard. On the coast we saw a 
fire, as we sailed from the Point Carao towards Curiapan, 
but for fear of the Spaniards none durst come to speak with 
us. I myself coasted it in my barge close aboard the shore 
and landed in every cove, the better to know the island, 
while the ships kept the channel. From Curiapan after a 
few days we turned up north-east to recover that place 
which the Spaniards call Puerto de los Espanoles,^ and the 
inhabitants Conquerahia; and as before, revictualling my 
barge, I left the ships and kept by the shore, the better to 
come to speech with some of the inhabitants, and also to 

* Exploration. 

* The name is derived from the Guayano Indians, on the Orinoco. 
^ Now Port of Spain. 

HC— Vol. 33 321 (11) 


understand the rivers, watering-places, and ports of the 
island, which, as it is rudely done, my purpose is to send 
your Lordship after a few days. From Curiapan I came to 
a port and seat of Indians called Parico, where we found a 
fresh water river, but saw no people. From thence I rowed 
to another port, called by the naturals Piche, and by the 
Spaniards Tierra de Brea. In the way between both were 
divers little brooks of fresh water, and one salt river that 
had store of oysters upon the branches of the trees, and 
were very salt and well tasted. All their oysters grow upon 
those boughs and sprays, and not on the ground; the like is 
commonly seen in other places of the West Indies, and else- 
where. This tree is described by Andrew Thevet, in his 
France Antarctiqne, and the form figured in the book as a 
plant very strange; and by Pliny in his twelfth book of his 
Natural History. But in this island, as also in Guiana, there 
are very many of them. 

At this point, called Tierra de Brea or Piche, there is that 
abundance of stone pitch that all the ships of the world may 
be therewith laden from thence; and we made trial of it in 
trimming our ships to be most excellent good, and melteth 
not with the sun as the pitch of Norway, and therefore for 
ships trading the south parts very profitable. From thence 
we went to the mountain foot called Annaperima, and so 
passing the river Carone, on which the Spanish city was 
seated, we met with our ships at Puerto de los Espanoles or 

This island of Trinidad hath the form of a sheephook, 
and is but narrow; the north part is very mountainous; the 
soil is very excellent, and will bear sugar, ginger, or any 
other commodity that the Indies yield. It hath store of 
deer, wild porks, fruit, fish, and fowl ; it hath also for bread 
sufficient maize, cassaz'i, and of those roots and fruits which 
are common everywhere in the West Indies. It hath divers 
beasts which the Indies have. not; the Spaniards confessed 
that they found grains of gold in some of the rivers; but 
they having a purpose to enter Guiana, the magazine of all 
rich metals, cared not to spend time in the search thereof 
any further. This island is called by the people thereof 
Cairi, and in it are divers nations. Those about Parico are 


called Jajo, those at Punta de Carao are of the Arwacas* 
and between Carao and Curiapan they are called Salvajos. 
Between Carao and Punta de Galera are the Nepojos, and 
those about the Spanish city term themselves Carinepagotes.'' 
Of the rest of the nations, and of other ports and rivers, I 
leave to speak here, being impertinent to my purpose, and 
mean to describe them as they are situate in the particular 
plot and description of the island, three parts whereof I 
coasted with my barge, that I might the better describe it. 

Meeting with the ships at Puerto de los Espanoles, we 
found at the landing-place a company of Spaniards who 
kept a guard at the descent; and they offering a sign of 
peace, I sent Captain Whiddon to speak with them, whom 
afterwards to my great grief I left buried in the said island 
after my return from Guiana, being a man most honest and 
valiant. The Spaniards seemed to be desirous to trade with 
us, and to enter into terms of peace, more for doubt of their 
own strength than for aught else; and in the end, upon 
pledge, some of them came aboard. The same evening 
there stale also aboard us in a small canoa two Indians, the 
one of them being a cacique or lord of the people, called 
Cantyman, who had the year before been with Captain Whid- 
don, and was of his acquaintance. By this Cantyman we 
understood what strength the Spaniards had, how far it was 
to their city, and of Don Antonio de Berreo, the governor, 
who was said to be slain in his second attempt of Guiana, 
but was not. 

While we remained at Puerto de los Espanoles some 
Spaniards came aboard us to buy linen of the company, and 
such other things as they wanted, and also to view our ships 
and company, all which I entertained kindly and feasted 
after our manner. By means whereof I learned of one and 
another as much of the estate of Guiana as I could, or as 
they knew; for those poor soldiers having been many years 
without wine, a few draughts made them merry, in which 
mood they vaunted of Guiana and the riches thereof, and all 
what they knew of the ways and passages; myself seeming 
to purpose nothing less than the entrance or discovery there- 
of, but bred in them an opinion that I was bound only for 

• Arawaks. * Carib-people. 


the relief of those English which I had planted in Vir- 
ginia, whereof the bruit was come among them; which I had 
performed in my return, if extremity of weather had not 
forced me from the said coast. 

I found occasions of staying in this place for two causes. 
The one was to be revenged of Berreo, who the year before, 
1594, had betrayed eight of Captain Whiddon's men, and 
took them while he departed from them to seek the Edward 
Bonaventure, which arrived at Trinidad the day before from 
the East Indies : in whose absence Berreo sent a canoa aboard 
the pinnace only with Indians and dogs inviting the com- 
pany to go with them into the woods to kill a deer. Who, 
like wise men, in the absence of their captain followed the 
Indians, but were no sooner one arquebus shot from the 
shore, but Berreo's soldiers lying in ambush had them all, 
notwithstanding that he had given his word to Captain 
Whiddon that they should take water and wood safely. 
The other cause of my stay was, for that by discourse with 
the Spaniards I daily learned more and more of Guiana, of 
the rivers and passages, and of the enterprise of Berreo, by 
what means or fault he failed, and how he meant to prose- 
cute the same. 

While we thus spent the time I was assured by another 
cacique of the north side of the island, that Berreo had sent 
to Margarita and Ciiniana for soldiers, meaning to have 
given me a cassado^ at parting, if it had been possible. 
For although he had given order through all the island that 
no Indian should come aboard to trade with me upon pain 
of hanging and quartering (having executed two of them 
for the same, which I afterwards found), yet every night 
there came some with most lamentable complaints of his 
cruelty: how he had divided the island and given to every 
soldier a part ; that he made the ancient caciques, which were 
lords of the country, to be their slaves; that he kept them 
in chains, and dropped their naked bodies with burning 
bacon, and such other torments, which I found afterwards 
to be true. For in the city, after I entered the same, there 
were five of the lords or little kings, which they call caciques 
in the West Indies, in one chain, almost dead-of famine, and 

'Cachado (,cachada)=a blow. 


wasted with torments. These are called in their own lan- 
guage acarewana, and now of late since English, French, 
and Spanish, are ccme among them, they call themselves 
captains, because they perceive that the chiefest of every 
ship is called by that name. Those five captains in the chain 
were called Wannazvanare, Carroaori, Maquarima, Tarroo- 
panama, and Aterima. So as both to be revenged of the 
former wrong, as also considering that to enter Guiana by 
small boats, to depart 400 or 500 miles from my ships, and 
to leave a garrison in my back interested in the same 
enterprise, who also daily expected supplies out of Spain, I 
should have savoured very much of the ass; and therefore 
taking a time of most advantage, I set upon the Corps du 
garde in the evening, and having put them to the sword, 
sent Captain Caidfield onwards with sixty soldiers, and my- 
self followed with forty more, and so took their new city, 
which they called St. Joseph, by break of day. They abode 
not any fight after a few shot, and all being dismissed, but 
only Berreo and his companion,' I brought them with me 
aboard, and at the instance of the Indians I set their new 
city of St. Joseph on fire. The same day arrived Captain 
George Gifford with your lordship's ship, and Captain 
Keymis, whom I lost on the coast of Spain, with the gale go, 
and in them divers gentlemen and others, which to our little 
army was a great comfort and supply. 

We then hasted away towards our purposed discovery, 
and first I called all the captains of the island together that 
were enemies to the Spaniards; for there were some which 
Berreo had brought out of other countries, and planted there 
to eat out and waste those that were natural of the place. . 
And by my Indian interpreter, which I carried out of Eng- 
land, I made them understand that I was the servant of a 
queen who was the great cacique of the north, and a virgin, 
and had more caciqui under her than there were trees in 
that island; that she was an enemy to the Castellani in re- 
spect of their tyranny and oppression, and that she delivered 
all such nations about her, as were by them oppressed ; and 
having freed all the coast of the northern world from their 
servitude, had sent me to free them also, and withal to de- 

•The Portuguese captain Alvaro Jorge (see p. 369). 


fend the country of Guiana from their invasion and conquest 
I shewed them her Majesty's picture, which they so admired 
and honoured, as it had been easy to have brought them 
idolatrous thereof. The like and a more large discourse I 
made to the rest of the nations, both in my passing to 
Guiana and to those of the borders, so as in that part of the 
world her Majesty is very famous and admirable ; whom 
they now call Ezrabeta cassipuna aquerewana, which is 
as much as ' Elizabeth, the Great Princess, or Greatest 
Commander.' This done, we left Puerto de los Espanoles, 
and returned to Curiapan, and having Berreo my prisoner, 
I gathered from him as much of Guiana as he knew. This 
Berreo is a gentleman well descended, and had long served 
the Spanish king in Milan, Naples, the Low Countries, and 
elsewhere, very valiant and liberal, and a gentleman of 
great assuredness, and of a great heart. I used him ac- 
cording to his estate and worth in all things I could, accord- 
ing to the small means I had. 

I sent Captain Whiddon the year before to get what 
knowledge he could of Guiana: and the end of my journey 
at this time was to discover and enter the same. But my 
intelligence was far from truth, for the country is situate 
about 600 English miles further from the sea than I was 
made believe it had been. Which afterwards understanding 
to be true by Berreo, I kept it from the knowledge of my 
company, who else would never have been brought to at- 
tempt the same. Of which 600 miles I passed 400, leaving 
my ships so far from me at anchor in the sea, which was 
more of desire to perform that discovery than of reason, 
especially having such poor and weak vessels to trans- 
port ourselves in. For in the bottom of an old galego which 
I caused to be fashioned like a galley, and in one barge, two 
wherries, and a ship-boat of the Lion's Whelp, we carried 
100 persons and their victuals for a month in the same, be- 
ing all driven to lie in the rain and weather in the open air, 
in the burning sun, and upon the hard boards, and to dress 
our meat, and to carry all manner of furniture in them. 
Wherewith they were so pestered and unsavoury, that what 
with victuals being most fish, with the Λvet clothes of so 
many men thrust together, and the heat of the sun, I will 


undertake there was never any prison in England that could 
be found more unsavoury and loathsome, especially to my- 
self, who had for many years before been dieted and cared 
for in a sort far more differing. 

If Captain Preston had not been persuaded that he should 
have come too late to Trinidad to have found us there (for 
the month was expired which I promised to tarry for him 
there ere he could recover the coast of Spain) but that it 
had pleased God he might have joined with us, and that we 
had entered the country but some ten days sooner ere the 
rivers were overflown, we had adventured either to have 
gone to the great city of Manoa, or at least taken so many 
of the other cities and towns nearer at hand, as would have 
made a royal return. But it pleased not God so much to 
favour me at this time. If it shall be my lot to prosecute 
the same, I shall willingly spend my life therein. And if 
any else shall be enabled thereunto, and conquer the same, 
I assure him thus much; he shall perform more than ever 
was done in Mexico by Cortes, or in Peru by Pizarro, where- 
of the one conquered the empire of A'hdesuma, the other of 
Guascar and Atabalipa. And whatsoever prince shall possess 
it, that prince shall be lord of more gold, and of a more beau- 
tiful empire, and of more cities and people, than either the 
king of Spain or the Great Turk. 

But because there may arise many doubts, and how this 
empire of Guiana is become so populous, and adorned with 
so many great cities, towns, temples, and treasures, I thought 
good to make it known, that the emperor now reigning is 
descended from those magnificent princes of Peru, of whose 
large territories, of whose policies, conquests, edifices, and 
riches, Pedro de Cieza, Francisco Lopes, and others have 
written large discourses. For when Francisco Pizarro, 
Diego Almagro and others conquered the said empire of 
Peru, and had put to death Atabalipa, son to Guayna Capac, 
which Atabalipa had formerly caused his eldest brother 
Guascar to be slain, one of the younger sons of Guayna 
Capac fled out of Pent, and took with him many thousands 
of those soldiers of the empire called orejones,^° and with 

*** Ore/o«ei = ' having large ears,' the name given by the Spaniards to the 
Peruvian warriors, who wore ear-pendants. 


those and many others which followed him, he vanquished 
all that tract and valley of America which is situate between 
the great river of Amazons and Baraquan, otherwise called 
Orenoque and Ma^anon^ 

The empire of Guiana is directly east from Peru towards 
the sea, and lieth under the equinoctial line; and it hath 
more abundance of gold than any part of Peru, and as many 
or moe^ great cities than ever Peru had when it flourished 
most. It is governed by the same laws, and the emperor 
and people observe the same religion, and the same form 
and policies in government as were used in Peru, not differ- 
ing in any part. And I have been assured by such of the 
Spaniards as have seen Manoa, the imperial city of Guiana, 
which the Spaniards call El Dorado, that for the greatness, 
for the riches, and for the excellent seat, it far exceedeth 
any of the world, at least of so much of the world as is 
known to the Spanish nation. It is founded upon a lake of 
salt water of 200 leagues long, like unto Mare Caspium,. 
And if we compare it to that of Peru, and but read the re- 
port of Francisco Lopez and others, it will seem more 
than credible; and because we may judge of the one by the 
other, I thought good to insert part of the 120. chapter of 
Lopez in his General History of the Indies, wherein he de- 
scribeth the court and magnificence of Guayna Capac, an- 
cestor to the emperor of Guiana, whose very words are 
these : — 

* Todo el servicio de su casa, mesa, y cocina era de ore 
y de plata, y cuando menos de plata y cobre, por mas recio. 
Tenia en su recamara estatuas huecas de oro, que parescian 
gigantes, y las figuras al propio y tamano de cuantos ani- 
males, aves, arboles, y yerbas produce la tierra, y de cuantos 
peces cria la mar y agua de sus reynos. Tenia asimesmo 
sogas, costales, cestas, y troxes de oro y plata; rimeros de 
palos de oro, que pareciesen lena rajada para quemar. En 
fin no habia cosa en su tierra, que no la tuviese de oro con- 
trahecha; y aun dizen, que tenian los Ingas un verjel en una 
isla cerca de la Puna, donde se iban a holgar, cuando querian 

" Baraquan is the alternative name to Orenoque, Maranon to Amazons. 
^ More. 


mar, que tenia la hortaliza, las flores, y arboles de oro y 
plata; invencion y grandeza hasta entonces nunca vista. 
Allende de todo esto, tenia infinitisima cantidad de plata 
y oro por labrar en el Cuzco, que se perdio por la muerte 
de Guascar; ca los Indies lo escondieron, viendo que 
los Espanoles se lo tomaban, y enviaban a Espana.' That is, 
' All the vessels of his house, table, and kitchen, were of 
gold and silver, and the meanest of silver and copper for 
strength and hardness of metal. He had in his wardrobe 
hollow statues of gold which seemed giants, and the figures 
in proportion and bigness of all the beasts, birds, trees, and 
herbs, that the earth bringeth forth ; and of all the fishes 
that the sea or waters of his kingdom breedeth. He had 
also ropes, budgets, chests, and troughs of gold and silver, 
heaps of billets of gold, that seemed wood marked out^' to 
burn. Finally, there was nothing in his country whereof 
he had not the counterfeit in gold. Yea, and they say, the 
Ingas had a garden of pleasure in an island near Puna, 
where they went to recreate themselves, when they would 
take the air of the sea, which had all kinds of garden-herbs, 
flowers, and trees of gold and silver ; an invention and 
magnificence till then never seen. Besides all this, he had 
an infinite quantity of silver and gold unwrought in Cuzco, 
which was lost by the death of Guascar, for the Indians hid 
it, seeing that the Spaniards took it, and sent it into Spain. 

And in the 117. chapter; Francisco Pizarro caused the 
gold and silver of Atahalipa to be weighed after he had taken 
it, which Lopez setteth down in these words following: — 
' Hallaron cincuenta y dos mil marcos de buena plata, y un 
millon y trecientos y veinte y seis mil y quinientos pesos de 
oro.' Which is, ' They found 52,000 marks of good silver, 
and 1,326,500 pesos of gold.' Now, although these reports 
may seem strange, yet if we consider the many millions 
which are daily brought out of Peril into Spain, we may 
easily believe the same. For we find that by the abundant 
treasure of that country the Spanish king vexes all the 
princes of Europe, and is become, in a few years, from a 
poor king of Castile, the greatest monarch of this part of 

18 Rather, ' si>ltt htto logs.' 


the world, and likely every day to increase if other princes 
forslow the good occasions oi¥ered, and suffer him to add 
this empire to the rest, which by far exceedeth all the rest. 
If his gold now endanger us, he will then be unresistible. 
Such of the Spaniards as afterwards endeavoured the con- 
quest thereof, whereof there have been many, as shall be 
declared hereafter, thought that this Inga, of whom this 
emperor now living is descended, took his way by the river 
of Amazons, by that branch which is called Papamene^*' 
For by that way followed Orellana, by the commandment of 
Gonzalo Pizarro, in the year 1542, whose name the river 
also beareth this day. Which is also by others ailed Mara- 
iton, although Andrew Thevet doth affirm that between 
Maranon and Amazons there are 120 leagues; but sure it 
is that those rivers have one head and beginning, and the 
Maranon, which Thevet describeth, is but a branch of 
Amazons or Orellana, of which I will speak more in another 
place. It was attempted by Ordas; but it is now little less 
than 70 years since that Diego Ordas, a Knight of the Order 
of Santiago, attempted the same; and it was in the year 
1542 that Orellana discovered the river of Amazons; but 
the first that ever saw Manoa was Juan Martinez, master of 
the munition to Ordas. At a port called Morequito^^ in 
Guiana, there lieth at this day a great anchor of Ordas his 
ship. And this port is some 300 miles within the land, upon 
the great river of Orenoque. I rested at this port four days, 
twenty days after I left the ships at Curiapan. 

The relation of this Martinez, who was the first that dis- 
covered Manoa, his success, and end, is to be seen in the 
Chancery of St. Juan de Puerto Rico, whereof Berreo had a 
copy, which appeared to be the greatest encouragement as well 
to Berreo as to others that formerly attempted the discovery 
and conquest. Orellana, after he failed of the discovery of 
Guiana by the said river of Amazons, passed into Spain, 
and there obtained a patent of the king for the invasion and 
conquest, but died by sea about the islands; and his fleet 
being severed by tempest, the action for that time proceeded 
not. Diego Ordas followed the enterprise, and departed 

"The Papamene is a tributary not of the Amazon riyer but of the Meta, 
one of the principal tributaries of the Orinoco. 
Improbably San Miguel. 


Spain with 600 soldiers and thirty horse. Who, arriving on 
the coast of Guiana, was slain in a mutiny, with the most 
part of such as favoured him, as also of the rebellious part, 
insomuch as his ships perished and few or none returned; 
neither was it certainly known what became of the said 
Or das until Berreo found the anchor of his ship in the river 
of Orenoque; but it was supposed, and so it is written by 
Lopez, that he perished on the seas, and of other writers 
diversely conceived and reported. And hereof it came that 
Martinez entered so far within the land, and arrived at that 
city of Inga the emperor; for it chanced that while Ordas 
with his army rested at the port of Moreqiiito (who was 
either the first or second that attempted Guiana), by some 
negligence the whole store of powder provided for the ser- 
vice was set on fire, and Martinet, having the chief charge, 
was condemned by the General Ordas to be executed forth- 
with. Martinez, being much favoured by the soldiers, had 
all the means possible procured for his life; but it could not 
be obtained in other sort than this, that he should be set 
into a canoa alone, without any victual, only with his arms, 
and so turned loose into the great river. But it pleased God 
that the canoa was carried down the stream, and certain of 
the Guianians met it the same evening; and, having not at 
any time seen any Christian nor any man of that colour, 
they carried Martinez into the land to be wondered at, and 
so from town to town, until he came to the great city of 
Manoa, the seat and residence of Inga the emperor. The 
emperor, after he had beheld him, knew him to be a Christian, 
for it was not long before that his brethren Guascar and 
Atahalipa were vanquished by the Spaniards in Peru: and 
caused him to be lodged in his palace, and well entertained. 
He lived seven months in Manoa, but was not suffered to 
wander into the country anywhere. He was also brought 
thither all the way blindfold, led by the Indians, until he 
came to the entrance of Manoa itself, and w^as fourteen or 
fifteen days in the passage. He avowed at his death that he 
entered the city at noon, and then they uncovered his face ; 
and that he travelled all that day till night thorough the 
city, and the next day from sun rising to sun setting, yerc'" 



he came to the palace of Inga. After that Martinez had 
lived seven months in Manoa, and began to understand the 
language of the country, htga asked him whether he desired 
to return into his own country, or would willingly abide with 
him. But Martinez, not desirous to stay, obtained the favour 
of Inga to depart; with whom he sent divers Gidanians to 
conduct him to the river of Orenoque, all loaden with as 
much gold as they could carry, which he gave to Martinez 
at his departure. But when he was arrived near the river's 
side, the borderers which are called Orenoqucponi^^ robbed 
him and his Guianians of all the treasure (the borderers 
being at that time at wars, which Inga had not conquered) 
save only of two great bottles of gourds, which were filled 
with beads of gold curiously wrought, which those Orenoqiie- 
poni thought had been no other thing than his drink or meat, 
or grain for food, with which Martinez had liberty to pass. 
And so in canoas he fell down from the river of Orenoque 
to Trinidad, and from thence to Margarita) and so to St. Juan 
de Puerto Rico; where, remaining a long time for passage 
into Spain, he died. In the time of his extreme sickness, 
and when he was without hope of life, receiving the sacra- 
ment at the hands of his confessor, he delivered these things, 
with the relation of his travels, and also called for his 
calahazas or gourds of the gold beads, which he gave to the 
church and friars, to be prayed for. 

This Martinez was he that christened the city of Manoa 
by the name of El Dorado, and, as Berreo informed me, 
upon this occasion, those Guianians, and also the borderers, 
and all other in that tract which I have seen, are marvellous 
great drunkards ; in which vice I think no nation can com- 
pare with them; and at the times of their solemn feasts, 
when the emperor carouseth with his captains, tributaries, 
and governors, the manner is thus. All those that pledge him 
are first stripped naked and their bodies anointed all over 
with a kind of white balsamum (by them called curca), of 
which there is great plenty, and yet very dear amongst 
them, and it is of all other the most precious, whereof we 
have had good experience. When they are anointed all over, 
certain servants of the emperor, having prepared gold made 

^"^ ' On the Orinoco.' Potti is a Carib postposition meaning ' on.' 


into fine powder, blow it thorough hollow canes upon their 
naked bodies, until they be all shining from the foot to the 
head; and in this sort they sit drinking by twenties and 
hundreds, and continue in drunkenness sometimes six or 
seven days together.^^ The same is also confirmed by a letter 
written into Spain which was intercepted, which Master 
Robert Dudley told me he had seen. Upon this sight, and 
for the abundance of gold which he saw in the city, the 
images of gold in their temples, the plates, armours, and 
shields of gold which they use in the wars, he called it El 

After the death of Ordas and Martinez, and after Orel- 
lana, who was employed by Gonzalo Pizarro, one Pedro de 
Orsiia, a knight of Navarre, attempted Guiana, taking his 
way into Peru, and built his brigandines upon a river called 
Oia, which riseth to the southward of Quito, and is very 
great. This river falleth into Amazons, by which Orsua 
with his companies descended, and came out of that province 
which is called Motilones;^^ and it seemeth to me that this 
empire is reserved for her Majesty and the English nation, 
by reason of the hard success which all these and other 
Spaniards found in attempting the same, whereof I will 
speak briefly, though impertinent in some sort to my purpose. 
This Pedro de Orsiia had among his troops a Biscayan called 
Aguirre, a man meanly born, who bare no other office than 
a sergeant or alferez:'^ but after certain months, when the 
soldiers were grieved with travels and consumed with 
famine, and that no entrance could be found by the branches 
or body of Amazons, this Aguirre raised a mutiny, of which 
he made himself the head, and so prevailed as he put Orsua 
to the sword and all his followers, taking on him the whole 
charge and commandment, with a purpose not only to make 
himself emperor of Guiana, but also of Peru and of all that 
side of the West Indies. He had of his party 700 soldiers, 
and of those many promised to draw in other captains and 
companies, to deliver up towns and forts in Peru; but neither 

i*The substance of this report is in the end of the ' Navigation of the 
Great River of Marafion,' written by Gonzalo Fernando de Oviedo to 
Cardinal Bembo (Ramusio, vol. iii. fol. 416). (Note by Hakluyt.) 

1*' Friars' (Indians so named from their cropped heads). 

^ Al-faris (Arab.), horseman, mounted officer. 


finding by the said river any passage into Guiana, nor any 
possibility to return towards Peru by the same Amasons, by 
reason that the descent of the river made so great a current, 
he was enforced to disemboque at the mouth of the said 
Amazons, which cannot be less than ι,οοο leagues from the 
place where they embarked. From thence he coasted the 
land till he arrived at Margarita to the north of Mompatar, 
which is at this day called Puerto de Tyranno, for that he 
there slew Don Juan de Villa Andreda, Governor of Marga- 
rita, who was father to Don Juan Sarmiento, Governor of 
Margarita when Sir John Burgh landed there and attempted 
the island. Aguirre put to the sword all other in the island 
that refused to be of his party, and took with him certain 
cimarrones^ and other desperate companions. From thence 
he went to Cumana and there slew the governor, and dealt 
in all as at Margarita. He spoiled all the coast of Caracas 
and the province of Venezuela and of Rio de la Hacha; and, 
as I remember, it was the same year that Sir John Hawkins 
sailed to St. Juan de Ullua in the Jesus of Lubeck;" for 
himself told me that he met with such a one upon the coast, 
that rebelled, and had sailed down all the river of Amazons. 
Aguirre from thence landed about Santa Marta and sacked 
it also, putting to death so many as refused to be his fol- 
lowers, purposing to invade Nuevo Reyno de Granada and to 
sack Pamplona, Merida, Lagrita, Tunja, and the rest of the 
cities of Nuevo Reyno, and from thence again to enter Peru; 
but in a fight in the said Nuevo Reyno he was overthrown, 
and, finding no way to escape, he first put to the sword his 
own children, foretelling them that they should not live to be 
defamed or upbraided by the Spaniards after his death, who 
would have termed them the children of a traitor or tyrant; 
and that, sithence he could not make them princes, he would 
yet deliver them from shame and reproach. These were the 
ends and tragedies of Ordas, Martinez, Orellana, Orsiia, and 
Aguirre. Also soon after Ordas followed Jeronimo Orfal 
de Saragosa, with 130 soldiers; who failing his entrance by 
sea, was cast with the current on the coast of Paria, and 
peopled about vS". Miguel de Neveri. It was then attempted 
by Don Pedro de Silva, a Portuguese of the family of Ruy 

** Fuekiye slayes. «1567-68. 


Gomez de Silva, and by the favour which Ruy Gomes had 
with the king he was set out. But he also shot wide of the 
mark; for being departed from Spain with his fleet, he en- 
tered by Maranon or Amazons, where by the nations of the 
river and by the Amazons, he was utterly overthrown, and 
himself and all his army defeated; only seven escaped, and of 
those but two returned. 

After him came Pedro Hernandez de Serpa, and landed 
at Cumana, in the West Indies, taking his journey by land 
towards Orenoqiie, which may be some 120 leagues ; but yere 
he came to the borders of the said river, he was set upon 
by a nation of the Indians, called Wikiri, and overthrown 
in such sort, that of 300 soldiers, horsemen, many Indians, 
and negroes, there returned but eighteen. Others affirm that 
he was defeated in the very entrance of Guiana, at the first 
civil town of the empire called Macuregiiarai. Captain 
Preston, in taking Santiago de Leon (which was by him and 
his companies very resolutely performed, being a great town, 
and far within the land) held a gentleman prisoner, who 
died in his ship, that was one of the company of Hernandez 
de Serpa, and saved among those that escaped; who 
witnessed what opinion is held among the Spaniards 
thereabouts of the great riches of Guiana, and El Do- 
rado, the city of Inga. Another Spaniard was brought 
aboard me by Captain Preston, who told me in the hearing 
of himself and divers other gentlemen, that he met with 
Berreo's camp-master at Caracas, when he came from 
the borders of Guiana, and that he saw Avith him forty 
of most pure plates of gold, curiously wrought, and 
swords of Guiana decked and inlaid with gold, feathers 
garnished with gold, and divers rarities, which he carried 
to the Spanish king. 

After Hernandez de Serpa, it was undertaken by the 
Adelantado, Don Gonzalez Ximenes de Quesada, who was 
one of the chiefest in the conquest of Nuevo Reyno, whose 
daughter and heir Don Antonio de Berreo married. Gon- 
'zalez sought the passage also by the river called Papamene, 
which riseth by Quito, in Peru, and runneth south-east 100 
leagues, and then falleth into Amazons. But he also, failing 
the entrance, returned with the loss of much labour and 


cost. I took one Captain George, a Spaniard, that followed 
Gonzalez in this enterprise. Gonzalez gave his daughter to 
Berreo, taking his oath and honour to follow the enterprise 
to the last of his substance and life. Who since, as he hath 
sworn to me, hath spent 300,000 ducats in the same, and yet 
never could enter so far into the land as myself with that 
poor troop, or rather a handful of mien, being in all about 100 
gentlemen, soldiers, rowers, boat-keepers, boys, and of all 
sorts; neither could any of the forepassed undertakers, nor 
Berreo himself, discover the country, till now lately by con- 
ference with an ancient king, called Carapatia,^ he got the 
true light thereof. For Berreo came about 1,500 miles yere 
he understood aught, or could find any passage or entrance 
into any part thereof; yet he had experience of all these 
fore-named, and divers others, and was persuaded of their 
errors and mistakings. Berreo sought it by the river Cassa- 
nar, which falleth into a great river called Pato: Pato 
falleth into Meta, and Meta into Baraquan, which is also 
called Orenoqiie. He took his journey from Nuevo Reyno 
de Granada, where he dwelt, having the inheritance of Gon- 
zalez Ximenes in those parts; he was followed with 700 
horse, he drove with him 1,000 head of cattle, he had also 
many women, Indians, and slaves. How all these rivers 
cross and encounter, how the country lieth and is bordered, 
the passage of Ximenes and Berreo, mine own discovery, 
and the way that I entered, with all the rest of the nations 
and rivers, your lordship shall receive in a large chart or 
map, which I have not yet finished, and which I shall most 
humbly pray your lordship to secrete, and not to suffer it to 
pass your own hands; for by a draught thereof all may be 
prevented by other nations; for I know it is this very year 
sought by the French, although by the way that they now 
take, I fear it not much. It was also told me yere I departed 
England, that Villiers, the Admiral, was in preparation for 
the planting of Amazons, to which river the French have 
made divers voyages, and returned ^* much gold and other 
rarities. I spake with a captain of a French ship that came 

^ Carapana (=Caribana, Carib land) was an old European name for the 
Atlantic coast near the mouth of the Orinoco, and hence was applied to one 
of its chiefs ("see p. 207). Berrio called this district ' Emeria.' 

* Brought back. 


from thence, his ship riding in Falmouth the same year that 
my ships came first from Virginia; there was another this 
year in Helford, that also came from thence, and had been 
fourteen months at an anchor in Amazons; which were both 
very rich. 

Ahhough, as I am persuaded, Guiana cannot be entered 
that way, yet no doubt the trade of gold from thence 
passeth by branches of rivers into the river of Amazons, and 
so it doth on every hand far from the country itself; for 
those Indians of Trinidad have plates of gold from Guiana, 
and those cannibals of Dominica which dwell in the islands 
by which our ships pass yearly to the West Indies, also the 
Indians of Paria, those Indians called Tucaris, Chochi, Apo- 
tomios, Cumanagotos, and all those other nations inhabiting 
near about the mountains that run from Paria thorough the 
province of Venezuela, and in Maracapana, and the canni- 
bals of Giianipa, the Indians called Assawai, Coaca, Ajai, 
and the rest (all which shall be described in my description 
as they are situate) have plates of gold of Guiana. And 
upon the river of Amazons, Thevet writeth that the people 
wear croissants of gold, for of that form the Guianians most 
commonly make them; so as from Dominica to Amazons, 
which is above 250 leagues, all the chief Indians in all parts 
wear of those plates of Guiana. Undoubtedly those that 
trade [with] Amazons return much gold, which (as is afore- 
said) Cometh by trade from Guiana, by some branch of a 
river that falleth from the country into Amazons, and either 
it is by the river which passeth by the nations called Tis- 
nados, or by Caripnna. 

I made enquiry amongst the most ancient and best travelled 
of the Orenoqueponi, and I had knowledge of all the rivers 
between Orenoque and Amazons, and was very desirous to 
understand the truth of those warlike women, because of 
some it is believed, of others not. And though I digress 
from my purpose, yet I will set down that which hath been 
delivered me for truth of those women, and I spake with a 
cacique, or lord of people, that told me he had been in the 
river, and beyond it also. The nations of these women are 
on the south side of the river in the provinces of Topago, 
and their chiefest strengths and retracts are in the islands 


situate on the south side of the entrance, some 60 leagues 
within the mouth of the said river. The memories of the 
like women are very ancient as well in Africa as in Asia. 
In Africa those that had Medusa for queen; others in 
Scythia, near the rivers of Tanais and Thermodon. We find, 
also, that Lampedo and Marthesia were queens of the Ama- 
zons. In many histories they are verified to have been, and 
in divers ages and provinces; but they which are not far 
from Guiana do accompany with men but once in a year, and 
for the time of one month, which I gather by their relation, 
to be in April ; and that time all kings of the borders assemble, 
and queens of the Amazons; and after the queens have 
chosen, the rest cast lots for their valentines. This one 
month they feast, dance, and drink of their Avines in abun- 
dance ; and the moon being done they all depart to their own 
provinces. * * * * They are said to be very cruel and 
bloodthirsty, especially to such as offer to invade their terri- 
tories. These Amazons have likewise great store of these 
plates of gold, which they recover by exchange chiefly for 
a kind of green stones, which the Spaniards call piedras 
hijadas, and we use for spleen-stones f^ and for the disease 
of the stone we also esteem them. Of these I saw divers in 
Guiana; and commonly every king or cacique hath one, 
which their wives for the most part wear, and they esteem 
them as great jewels. 

But to return to the enterprise of Berreo, who, as I have 
said, departed from Nuevo Reyno with 700 horse, besides 
the provisions above rehearsed. He descended by the river 
called Cassanar, which riseth in Nuevo Reyno out of the 
mountains by the city of Tiinja, from which mountain also 
springeth Pato; both which fall into the great river of Meta, 
and Meta riseth from a mountain joining to Pamplona, in the 
same Nuevo Reyno de Granada. These, as also Guaiare, 
which issueth out of the mountains by Timana, fall all into 
Baraqiian, and are but of his heads; for at their coming 
together they lose their names, and Baraquan farther down 
is also rebaptized by the name of Orenoquc. On the other 
side of the city and hills of Timana riseth Rio Grande, 

^ Stones reduced to powder and taken internally to cure maladies of 
the spleen. 


which falleth into the sea by Santa Marta. By Cassanar 
first, and so into Meta, Berreo passed, keeping his horsemen 
on the banks, where the country served them for to march; 
and where otherwise, he was driven to embark them in boats 
which he builded for the purpose, and so came with the 
current down the river of Meta, and so into Baraquan. 
After he entered that great and mighty river, he began daily 
to lose of his companies both men and horse ; for it is in 
many places violently swift, and hath forcible eddies, many 
sands, and divers islands sharp pointed with rocks. But 
after one whole year, journeying for the most part by river, 
and the rest by land, he grew daily to fewer numbers; for 
both by sickness, and by encountering with the people of 
those regions thorough which he travelled, his companies 
were much wasted, especially by divers encounters with the 
Amapaians^ And in all this time he never could learn of 
any passage into Guiana, nor any news or fame thereof, 
until he came to a further border of the said Amapaia, eight 
days' journey from the river Carolif which was the furthest 
river that he entered. Among those of Amapaia, Guiana 
was famous ; but few of these people accosted Berreo, or 
would trade with him the first three months of the six which 
he sojourned there. This Amapaia is also marvellous rich in 
gold, as both Berreo confessed and those of Guiana with 
whom I had most conference; and is situate upon Orenoque 
also. In this country Berreo lost sixty of his best soldiers, 
and most of all his horse that remained in his former year's 
travel. But in the end, after divers encounters with those 
nations, they grew to peace, and they presented Berreo with 
ten images of fine gold among divers other plates and 
croissants, which, as he sware to me, and divers other 
gentlemen, were so curiously wrought, as he had not seen 
the like either in Italy, Spain, or the Low Countries; and 
he was resolved that when they came to the hands of the 
Spanish king, to whom he had sent them by his camp-master, 
they would appear very admirable, especially being wrought 
by such a nation as had no iron instruments at all, nor any 

"Amapaia was Berrio's name for the Orinoco valley above the Caura 

"The Caroni river, the first great affluent of the Orinoco on the south, 
about 1 80 miles from the sea. 


of those helps which our goldsmiths have to work withal. 
The particular name of the people in Amapaia which gave 
him these pieces, are called Anehas, and the river of 
Orenoque at that place is about twelve English miles broad, 
which may be from his outfall into the sea 700 or 800 miles. 
This province of Amapaia is a very low and a marish 
ground near the river; and by reason of the red water which 
issueth out in small branches thorough the fenny and boggy 
ground, there breed divers poisonful worms and serpents. 
And the Spaniards not suspecting, nor in any sort fore- 
knowing the danger, were infected with a grievous kind of 
flux by drinking thereof, and even the very horses poisoned 
iherewith ; insomuch as at the end of the six months that they 
abode there, of all their troops there we/e not left above 120 
soldiers, and neither horse nor cattle. For Berreo hoped to 
have found Guiana by 1,000 miles nearer than it fell out to 
be in the end; by means whereof they sustained much want, 
and much hunger, oppressed with grievous diseases, and all 
the miseries that could be imagined, I demanded of those in 
Guiana that had travelled Amapaia, how they lived with that 
tawny or red water when they travelled thither; and they 
told me that after the sun was near the middle of the sky, 
they used to fill their pots and pitchers with that water, but 
either before that time or towards the setting of the sun it 
was dangerous to drink of, and in the night strong poison. 
I learned also of divers other rivers of that nature among 
them, which were also, while the sun was in the meridian, 
very safe to drink, and in the morning, evening, and night, 
wonderful dangerous and infective. From this province 
Berreo hasted away as soon as the spring and beginning of 
summer appeared, and sought his entrance on the borders of 
Orenoque on the south side; but there ran a ledge of so high 
and impassable mountains, as he was not able by any means 
to march over them, continuing from the east sea into which 
Orenoque falleth, even to Quito in Peru. Neither had he 
means to carry victual or munition over those craggy, high, 
and fast hills, being all woody, and those so thick and spiny, 
and so full of prickles, thorns, and briars, as it is impossible 
to creep thorough them. He had also neither friendship 
among the people, nor any interpreter to persuade or treat 


with them; and more, to his disadvantage, the caciques and 
kings of Amapaia had given knowledge of his purpose to the 
Guianians, and that he sought to sack and conquer the em- 
pire, for the hope of their so great abundance and quantities 
of gold. He passed by the mouths of many great rivers 
which fell into Orenoque both from the north and south, 
which I forbear to name, for tediousness, and because they 
are more pleasing in describing than reading. 

Berreo affirmed that there fell an hundred rivers into 
Orenoque from the north and south : whereof the least was 
as big as Rio Grande,'^ that passed between Popayan and 
Nuevo Reyno de Granada, Rio Grande being esteemed one 
of the renowned rivers in all the West Indies, and num- 
bered among the great rivers of the world. But he knew 
not the names of any of these, but Caroli only; neither from 
what nations they descended, neither to what provinces they 
led, for he had no means to discourse with the inhabitants 
at any time; neither was he curious in these things, being 
utterly unlearned, and not knowing the east from the west. 
But of all these I got some knowledge, and of many more, 
partly by mine own travel, and the rest by conference; of 
some one I learned one, of others the rest, having with me 
an Indian that spake many languages, and that of Guiana^ 
naturally. I sought out all the aged men, and such as were 
greatest travellers. And by the one and the other I came 
to understand the situations, the rivers, the kingdoms from 
the east sea to the borders of Peru, and from Orenoque south- 
ward as far as Amazons or Maranon, and the regions of 
Marinatamhal^ and of all the kings of provinces, and cap- 
tains of towns and villages, how they stood in terms of 
peace or war, and which were friends or enemies the one 
with the other ; without which there can be neither entrance 
nor conquest in those parts, nor elsewhere. For by the 
dissension between Guascar and Atabalipa, Pizarro con- 
quered Peru, and by the hatred that the Tlaxcallians bare 
to Mutezmna, Cortes was victorious over Mexico; without 
which both the one and the other had failed of their enter- 
prise, and of the great honour and riches which they at- 
tained unto. 

as The Magdalena. =» The Carib. »<> North coasts of Brazil. 


Now Berreo began to grow into despair, and looked for 
no other success than his predecessor in this enterprise; 
until such time as he arriA'^ed at the province of Emeria 
towards the east sea and mouth of the river, where he found 
a nation of people very favourable, and the country full of 
all manner of victual. The king of this land is called 
Carapana, a man very wise, subtle, and of great experience, 
being little less than an hundred years old. In his youth 
he was sent by his father into the island of Trinidad, by 
reason of civil war among themselves, and was bred at a 
village in that island, called Parico. At that place in his 
youth he had seen many Christians, both French and 
Spanish, and went divers times with the Indians of Trinidad 
to Margarita and Cumana, in the West Indies, for both 
those places have ever been relieved with victual from 
Trinidad: by reason whereof he grew of more under- 
standing, and noted the difference of the nations, com- 
paring the strength and arms of his country with those 
of the Christians, and ever after temporised so as whoso- 
ever else did amiss, or was wasted by contention, Carapana 
kept himself and his country in quiet and plenty. He 
also held peace with the Caribs or cannibals, his neigh- 
bours, and had free trade with all nations, whosoever else 
had war. 

Berreo sojourned and rested his weak troop in the town 
of Carapana six weeks, and from him learned the way and 
passage to Guiana, and the riches and magnificence thereof. 
But being then utterly unable to proceed, he determined to 
try his fortune another year, when he had renewed his pro- 
visions, and regathered more force, which he hoped for as 
well out of Spain as from Nuevo Reyno, where he had left 
his son Don Antonio Ximenes to second him upon the first 
notice given of his entrance; and so for the present em- 
barked himself in canoas, and by the branches of Orenoque 
arrived at Trinidad, having from Carapana sufficient pilots 
to conduct him. From Trinidad he coasted Paria, and so 
recovered Margarita; and having made relation to Don 
Juan Sarmiento, the Governor, of his proceeding, and per- 
suaded him of the riches of Guiana, he obtained from thence 
fifty soldiers, promising presently to return to Carapana, and 


SO into Guiana. But Berreo meant nothing less at that time ; 
for he wanted many provisions necessary for such an enter- 
prise, and therefore departed from Margarita, seated himself 
in Trinidad, and from thence sent his camp-master and his 
sergeant-major back to the borders to discover the nearest 
passage into the empire, as also to treat with the borderers, 
and to draw them to his party and love; without which, he 
knew he could neither pass safely, nor in any sort be relieved 
with victual or aught else. Carapana directed his company 
to a king called Morequito, assuring them that no man could 
deliver so much of Guiana as Morequito could, and that his 
dwelling was but five days' journey from Macureguarai, the 
first civil town of Guiana. 

Now your lordship shall understand that this Morequito, 
one of the greatest lords or kings of the borders of Guiana, 
had two or three years before been at Cumana and at Mar- 
garita, in the West Indies, with great store of plates of 
gold, which he carried to exchange for such other things as 
he wanted in his own country, and was daily feasted, and 
presented by the governors of those places, and held amongst 
them some two months. In which time one Vides, Governor 
of Cumana, won him to be his conductor into Guiana, being 
allured by those croissants and images of gold which he 
brought with him to trade, as also by the ancient fame and 
magnificence of El Dorado ; whereupon Vides sent into 
Spain for a patent to discover and conquer Guiana, not 
knowing of the precedence of Berreo's patent; which, as 
Berreo affirmeth, was signed before that of Vides. So as 
when Vides understood of Berreo and that he had made en- 
trance into that territory, and foregone his desire and hope, 
it was verily thought that Vides practised with Morequito to 
hinder and disturb Berreo in all he could, and not to suffer 
him to enter through his seignory, nor any of his companies; 
neither to victual, nor guide them in any sort. For Vides, 
Governor of Cumana, and Berreo, were become mortal 
enemies, as well for that Berreo had gotten Trinidad into his 
patent with Guiana, as also in that he was by Berreo pre- 
vented in the journey of Guiana itself. Howsoever it was, 
I know not, but Morequito for a time dissembled his dispo- 
sition, suffered ten Spaniards and a friar, which Berreo had 


sent to discover Manoa, to travel through his country, gave 
them a guide for Maciireguarai, the first town of civil and 
apparelled people, from whence they had other guides to 
bring them to Manoa, the great city of Inga; and being 
furnished with those things which they had learned of 
Carapana were of most price in Guiana, went onward, and 
in eleven days arrived at Manoa, as Berreo affirmeth for 
certain; although I could not be assured thereof by the lord 
which now governeth the province of Morequito, for he 
told me that they got all the gold they had in other towns 
on this side Manoa, there being many very great and rich, 
and (as he said) built like the towns of Christians, with 
many rooms. 

When these ten Spaniards were returned, and ready 
to put out of the border of Aromaia,^ the people of More- 
quito set upon them, and slew them all but one that swam 
the river, and took from them to the value of 40,000 pesos 
of gold; and one of them only lived to bring the news to 
Berreo, that both his nine soldiers and holy father were 
benighted in the said province. I myself spake with the 
captains of Morequito that slew them, and was at the place 
where it was executed. Berreo, enraged herewithal, sent 
all the strength he could make into Aromaia, to be revenged 
of him, his people, and country. But Morequito, suspecting 
the same, fled over Orenoque, and thorough the territories 
of the Saima and Wikiri recovered Cumana, where he 
thought himself very safe, with Vides the governor. But 
Berreo sending for him in the king's name, and his mes- 
sengers finding him in the house of one F ajar do, on the 
sudden, yere he was suspected, so as he could not then be 
conveyed away, Vides durst not deny him, as well to avoid 
the suspicion of the practice, as also for that an holy father 
was slain by him and his people. Morequito offered 
Fajardo the weight of three quintals in gold, to let him 
escape; but the poor Guianian, betrayed on all sides, was 
delivered to the camp-master of Berreo, and was presently 

After the death of this Morequito, the soldiers of Berreo 
spoiled his territory and took divers prisoners. Among 

*^The district below the Caroni river. 


Others they took the uncle of Morequito, called Topiawari, 
who is now king of Aromaia, whose son I brought with me 
into England, and is a man of great understanding and 
policy; he is above an hundred years old, and yet is of a very 
able body. The Spaniards led him in a chain seventeen days, 
and made him their guide from place to place between his 
country and Emeria, the province of Carapana aforesaid, 
and he was at last redeemed for an hundred plates of gold, 
and divers stones called piedras hijadas, or spleen-stones. 
Now Berreo for executing of Morequito, and other cruelties, 
spoils, and slaughters done in Aromaia, hath lost the love 
of the Orenoqueponi. and of all the borderers, and dare not 
send any of his soldiers any further into the land than to 
Carapana, which he called the port of Guiana; but from 
thence by the help of Carapana he had trade further 
into the country, and always appointed ten Spaniards to 
reside in Carapana's town,*" by whose favour, and by being 
conducted by his people, those ten searched the country 
thereabouts, as well for mines as for other trades and 

They also have gotten a nephew of Morequito, whom 
they have christened and named Don Juan, of whom they 
have great hope, endeavouring by all means to establish 
him in the said province. Among many other trades, those 
Spaniards used canoas to pass to the rivers of Barema, 
Pazuroma, and Dissequehe^ which are on the south side 
of the mouth of Orenoque, and there buy women and 
children from the cannibals, which are of that barbarous 
nature, as they will for three or four hatchets sell the sons 
and daughters of their own brethren and sisters, and for 
somewhat more even their own daughters. Hereof the 
Spaniards make great profit; for buying a maid of twelve 
or thirteen years for three or four hatchets, they sell them 
again at Margarita in the West Indies for fifty and an 
hundred pesos, which is so many crowns. 

The master of my ship, John Douglas, took one of the 
canoas which came laden from thence with people to be 
sold, and the most of them escaped ; yet of those he brought, 

^ The Spanish settlement of Santo Tome de la Guyana, founded by 
Berrio in 1591 or 1592, but represented by Raleigh as an Indian pueblo. 
** £ssequibo. 


there was one as well favoured and as well shaped as ever 
I saw any in England; and afterwards I saw many of 
them, which but for their tawny colour may be compared 
to any in Europe. They also trade in those rivers for 
bread of cassavi, of which they buy an hundred pound 
weight for a knife, and sell it at Margarita for ten pesos. 
They also recover great store of cotton, Brazil wood, and 
those beds which they call hamacas or Brazil beds, wherein 
in hot countries all the Spaniards use to lie commonly, 
and in no other, neither did we ourselves while we were 
there. By means of which trades, for ransom of divers of 
the Guianians, and for exchange of hatchets and knives, 
Berreo recovered some store of gold plates, eagles of gold, 
and images of men and divers birds, and dispatched his 
camp-master for Spain, with all that he had gathered, 
therewith to levy soldiers, and by the show thereof to draw 
others to the love of the enterprise. And having sent 
divers images as well of men as beasts, birds, and fishes, 
so curiously wrought in gold, he doubted not but to persuade 
the king to yield to him some further help, especially for that 
this land hath never been sacked, the mines never wrought, 
and in the Indies their works were well spent, and the gold 
drawn out with great labour and charge. He also de- 
spatched messengers to his son in Nuevo Reyno to levy all 
the forces he could, and to come down the river Orenoque 
to Emeria, the province of Carapana, to meet him; he 
had also sent to Santiago de Leon on the coast of the 
Caracas, to buy horses and mules. 

After I had thus learned of his proceedings past and 
purposed, I told him that I had resolved to see Guiana, and 
that it was the end of my journey, and the cause of my 
coming to Trinidad, as it was indeed, and for that purpose 
I sent Jacob Whiddon the year before to get intelligence: 
with whom Berreo himself had speech at that time, and re- 
membered how inquisitive Jacob Whiddon was of his pro- 
ceedings, and of the country of Guiana. Berreo was stricken 
into a great melancholy and sadness, and used all the argu- 
ments he could to dissuade me ; and also assured the gentle- 
men of my company that it would be labour lost, and that they 
should suffer many miseries if they proceeded. And first 


he delivered that I could not enter any of the rivers with 
any bark or pinnace, or hardly with any ship's boa-t, it was 
so low, sandy, and full of flats, and that his companies were 
daily grounded in their canoes, which drew but twelve inches 
water. He further said that none of the country would come 
to speak with us, but would all fly ; and if we followed them 
to their dwellings, they would bum their own towns. And 
besides that, the way was long, the winter at hand, and that 
the rivers beginning once to swell, it was impossible to stem 
the current; and that we could not in those small boats by 
any means carry victuals for half the time, and that (which 
indeed most discouraged my company) the kings and lords 
of all the borders of Guiana had decreed that none of them 
should trade with any Christians for gold, because the same 
would be their ολνη ΟΛ' -erthrow, and that for the love of 
gold the Christians meant to conquer and dispossess them 
of all together. 

Many and the most of these I found to be true; but yet I 
resolving to make trial of whatsoever happened, directed 
Captain George Gilford, my Vice-Admiral, to take the Lion's 
Whelp, and Captain Caulfield his bark, [and] to turn to the 
eastward, against the mouth of a river called Capuri, whose 
entrance I had before sent Captain Whiddon and John Doug- 
las the master to discover. Who found some nine foot 
water or better upon the flood, and five at low water; to 
whom I had given instructions that they should anchor at 
the edge of the shoal, and upon the best of the flood to thrust 
over, which shoal John Douglas buoyed and beckoned** for 
them before. But they laboured in vain; for neither could 
they turn it up altogether so far to the east, neither did the 
flood continue so long, but the water fell yere they could 
have passed the sands. As we after found by a second ex- 
perience : so as now we must either give over our enterprise, 
or leaving our ships at adventure 400 mile behind us, must 
run up in our ship's boats, one barge, and two wherries. 
But being doubtful how to carry victuals for so long a time 
in such baubles, or any strength of men, especially for that 
Berreo assured us that his son must be by that time come 
dowti with many soldiers, I sent away one King, master of 
*♦ Beaconed, i, e. placed a beacon or signal upon the buoy. 


the Lion's Whelp, with his ship-boat, to try another branch 
of the river in the bottom of the Bay of Guanipa, which was 
called Amana, to prove if there were water to be found for 
either of the small ships to enter. But when he came to 
the mouth of Amana, he found it as the rest, but stayed not 
to discover it thoroughly, because he was assured by an 
Indian, his guide, that the cannibals of Guanipa would assail 
them with many canoas, and that they shot poisoned arrows; 
so as if he hasted not back, they should all be lost. 

In the meantime, fearing the worst, I caused all the car- 
penters we had to cut down a galcgo boat, which we meant 
to cast off, and to fit her with banks to row on, and in all 
things to prepare her the best they could, so as she might 
be brought to draw but five foot : for so much we had on 
the bar of Capuri at low water. And doubting of King's 
return, I sent John Douglas again in my long barge, as well 
to relieve him, as also to make a perfect search in the bot- 
tom of the bay; for it hath been held for infallible, that 
whatsoever ship or boat shall fall therein can never disem- 
boque again, by reason of the violent current which setteth 
into the said bay, as also for that the breeze and easterly 
wind bloweth directly into the same. Of which opinion I 
have heard John Hampton*' of Plymouth, one of the greatest 
experience of England, and divers other besides that have 
traded to Trinidad. 

I sent with John Douglas an old cacique of Trinidad for 
a pilot, who told us that we could not return again by the 
bay or gulf, but that he knew a by-branch which ran within 
the land to the eastward, and he thought by it we might fall 
into Capuri, and so return in four days. John Douglas 
searched those rivers, and found four goodly entrances, 
whereof the least was as big as the Thames at Woolwich, but 
in the bay thitherward it was shoal and but six foot water; 
so as we were now without hope of any ship or bark to pass 
over, and therefore resolved to go on with the boats, and the 
bottom of the galego, in which we thrust 60 men. In the 
Lion's Whelp's boat and wherry we carried twenty, Captain 
Caiilfield in his wherry carried ten more, and in my barge 
other ten, which made up a hundred ; we had no other means 

*5 Captain of the Minion in the third voyage of Hawkins. 


but to carry victual for a month in the same, and also to 
lodge therein as we could, and to boil and dress our meat. 
Captain Gifford had with him Master Edward Porter, Cap- 
tain Eynos, and eight more in his wherry, with all their 
victual, weapons, and provisions. Captain Caulfield had 
with him my cousin Butshead Gorges, and eight more. In 
the galley, of gentlemen and officers myself had Captain 
Thyn, my cousin John Greenvile, my nephew John Gilbert, 
Captain Whiddon, Captain Keyniis, Edward Hancock, Cap- 
tain Clarke, Lieutenant Hughes, Thomas Upton, Captain 
Facy, Jerome Ferrar, Anthony Wells, William Connock, 
and above fifty more. We could not learn of Berreo any 
other way to enter but in branches so far to windward 
as it was impossible for us to recover; for we had as much 
sea to cross over in our wherries, as between Dover and 
Calice, and in a great hollow, the wind and current being 
both very strong. So as we were driven to go in those 
small boats directly before the wind into the bottom of the 
Bay of Guanipa, and from thence to enter the mouth of 
some one of those rivers which John Douglas had last dis- 
covered; and had with us for pilot an Indian of Barema, a 
river to the south of Orenoque, between that and Amazons, 
whose canoas we had formerly taken as he was going from 
the said Barema, laden with cassavi bread to sell at Mar- 
garita. This Arwacan promised to bring me into the great 
river of Orenoque; but indeed of that which he entered he 
was utterly ignorant, for he had not seen it in twelve years 
before, at which time he was very young, and of no judg- 
ment. And if God had not sent us another help, we might 
have wandered a whole year in that labyrinth of rivers, yere 
we had found any way, either out or in, especially after we 
were past ebbing and flowing, Avhich was in four days. For 
I know all the earth doth not yield the like confluence of 
streams and branches, the one crossing the other so many 
times, and all so fair and large, and so like one to another, 
as no man can tell which to take: and if we went by the 
sun or compass, hoping thereby to go directly one way or 
other, yet that way we were also carried in a circle amongst 
multitudes of islands, and every island so bordered with high 
trees as no man could see any further than the breadth of 


the river, or length of the breach. But this it chanced, that 
entering into a river (which because it had no name, we 
called the River of the Red Cross, ourselves being the first 
Christians that ever came therein), the 22. of May, as we 
were rowing up the same, we espied a small canoa with three 
Indians, which by the swiftness of my barge, rowing with 
eight oars, I overtook yere they could cross the river. The 
rest of the people on the banks, shadowed under the thick 
wood, gazed on with a doubtful conceit what might befall 
those three which we had taken. But when they perceived 
that we offered them no violence, neither entered their canoa 
with any of ours, nor took out of the canoa any of theirs, 
they then began to show themselves on the bank's side, and 
offered to traffic with us for such things as they had. And 
as we drew near, they all stayed; and we came with our 
barge to the mouth of a little creek which came from their 
town into the great river. 

As we abode here awhile, our Indian pilot, called Ferdi- 
nando, would needs go ashore to their village to fetch some 
fruits and to drink of their artificial wines, and also to see 
the place and know the lord of it against another time, and 
took with him a brother of his Λvhich he had with him in 
the journey. When they came to the village of these peo- 
ple the lord of the island offered to lay hands on them, pur- 
posing to have slain them both; yielding for reason that this 
Indian of ours had brought a strange nation into their ter- 
ritory to spoil and destroy them. But the pilot being quick 
and of a disposed body, slipt their fingers and ran into the 
woods, and his brother, being the better footman of the 
two, recovered the creek's mouth, where we stayed in our 
barge, crying out that his brother was slain. With that we 
set hands on one of them that was next us, a very old man, 
and brought him into the barge, assuring him that if we 
had not our pilot again Ave would presently cut off his head. 
This old man, being resolved that he should pay the loss of 
the other, cried out to those in the woods to save Ferdi- 
nando, our pilot; but they followed him notwithstanding, 
and hunted after him upon the foot with their deer-dogs, and 
with so main a cry that all the woods echoed with the shout 
they made. But at the last this poor chased Indian recovered 


the river side and got upon a tree, and, as we were coasting, 
leaped down and swam to the barge half dead with fear. 
But our good hap was that we kept the other old Indian, 
which we handf asted to redeem our pilot withal ; for, being 
natural of those rivers, we assured ourselves that he knew 
the way better than any stranger could. And, indeed, but 
for this chance, I think we had never found the way either 
to Guiana or back to our ships; for Ferdinando after a few 
days knew nothing at all, nor which way to turn; yea, and 
many times the old man himself was in great doubt which 
river to take. Those people which dwell in these broken 
islands and drowned lands are generally called Tivitivas. 
There are of them two sorts ; the one called Ciawani, and the 
other Waraweete. 

The great river of Orenoque or Baraquan hath nine 
branches which fall out on the north side of his own main 
mouth. On the south side it hath seven other fallings into the 
sea, so it disemboqueth by sixteen arms in all, between 
islands and broken ground; but the islands are very great, 
many of them as big as the Isle of Wight, and bigger, and 
many less. From the first branch on the north to the last 
of the south it is at least lOO leagues, so as the river's mouth 
is 300 miles wide at his entrance into the sea, which I take 
to be far bigger than that of Amazons. All those that in- 
habit in the mouth of this river upon the several north 
branches are these Tivitivas, of which there are two chief 
lords which have continual wars one with the other. The 
islands which lie on the right hand are called Pallamos, and 
the land on the left. Hororotomaka; and the river by which 
John Douglas returned within the land from Amana to 
Capnri they call Macuri. 

These Tivitivas are a very goodly people and very valiant, 
and have the most manly speech and most deliberate that ever 
I heard of what nation soever. In the summer they have 
houses on the ground, as in other places; in the winter they 
dwell upon the trees, where they build very artificial towns 
and villages, as it is written in the Spanish story of the 
West Indies that those people do in the low lands near the 
gulf of Uraba. For between May and September the river 
of Orenoque riseth thirty foot upright, and then are those 


islands overflown twenty foot high above the level of the 
ground, saving some few raised grounds in the middle of 
them ; and for this cause they are enforced to live in this 
manner. They never eat of anything that is set or sown; 
and as at home they use neither planting nor other manu- 
rance, so when they come abroad they refuse to feed of 
aught but of that which nature without labour bringeth forth. 
They use the tops of palmitos for bread, and kill deer, fish, 
and porks for the rest of their sustenance. They have also 
many sorts of fruits that grow in the woods, and great 
variety of birds and fowls; and if to speak of them were not 
tedious and vulgar, surely we saw in those passages of very 
rare colours and forms not elsewhere to be found, for as 
much as I have either seen or read. 

Of these people those that dwell upon the branches of 
Orenoque, called Capuri and Maciireo, are for the most part 
carpenters of canoas; for they make the most and fairest 
canoas, and sell them into Guiana for gold and into Trinidad 
for tabacco, in the excessive taking whereof they exceed all 
nations. And notwithstanding the moistness of the air in 
which they live, the hardness of their diet, and the great 
labours they suffer to hunt, fish, and fowl for their living, in 
all my life, either in the Indies or in Europe, did I never be- 
hold a more goodly or better-favoured people or a more 
manly. They were wont to make war upon all nations, and 
especially on the Cannibals, so as none durst without a good 
strength trade by those rivers; but of late they are at peace 
with their neighbours, all holding the Spaniards for a com- 
mon enemy. When their commanders die they use great 
lamentation; and when they think the flesh of their bodies 
is putrified and fallen from their bones, then they take up 
the carcase again and hang it in the cacique's house that 
died, and deck his skull with feathers of all colours, and 
hang all his gold plates about the bones of his arms, thighs, 
and legs. Those nations which are called Arzvacas, which 
dwell on the south of Orenoque, of which place and nation 
our Indian pilot was, are dispersed in many other places, 
and do use to beat the bones of their lords into powder, and 
their wives and friends drink it all in their several sorts of 


After we departed from the port of these Ciawani we 
passed up the river with the flood and anchored the ebb, 
and in this sort we went onward. The third day that we 
entered the river, our galley came on ground; and stuck so 
fast 39 we thought that even there our discovery had ended, 
and that we must have left four-score and ten of our men 
to have inhabited, like rooks upon trees, with those nations. 
But the next morning, after we had cast out all her ballast, 
with tugging and hauling to and fro we got her afloat and 
went on. At four days' end we fell into as goodly a river 
as ever I beheld, which was called the great Amana, which 
ran more directly without windings and turnings than the 
other. But soon after the flood of the sea left us; and, 
being enforced either by main strength to row against a 
violent current, or to return as wise as we went out, we 
had then no shift but to persuade the companies that it was 
but two or three days' work, and therefore desired them to 
take pains, every gentleman and others taking their turns 
to row, and to spell one the other at the hour's end. Every 
day we passed by goodly branches of rivers, some falling 
from the west, others from the east, into Amana; but those 
I leave to the description in the chart of discovery, where 
every one shall be named with his rising and descent. When 
three days more were overgone, our companies began to 
despair, the weather being extreme hot, the river bordered 
with very high trees that kept away the air, and the current 
against us every day stronger than other. But we ever- 
more commanded our pilots to promise an end the next day, 
and used it so long as we were driven to assure them from 
four reaches of the river to three, and so to two, and so to 
the next reach. But so long we laboured that many days 
were spent, and we driven to draw ourselves to harder allow- 
ance, our bread even at the last, and no drink at all ; and 
our men and ourselves so wearied and scorched, and doubtful 
withal whether we should ever perform it or no, the heat 
increasing as we drew towards the line ; for we were now in 
five degrees. 

The further we went on, our victual decreasing and the 
air breeding great faintness, we grew weaker and weaker, 
when we had most need of strength and ability. For hourly 

HC— Vol. 33 (12) 


the river ran more violently than other against us, and the 
barge, wherries, and ship's boat of Captain Gilford and Cap- 
tain Caulfield had spent all their provisions ; so as we were 
brought into despair and discomfort, had we not persuaded 
all the company that it was but only one day's work more to 
attain the land where we should be relieved of all we wanted, 
and if we returned, that we were sure to starve by the way, 
and that the world would also laugh us to scorn. On the 
banks of these rivers were divers sorts of fruits good to eat, 
flowers and trees of such variety as were sufficient to make 
ten volumes of Herhals; we relieved ourselves many times 
with the fruits of the country, and sometimes with fowl and 
fish. We saw birds of all colours, some carnation, some 
crimson, orange-tawny, purple, watchet,^* and of all other 
sorts, both simple and mixed, and it was unto us a great 
good-passing of the time to behold them, besides the relief 
we found by killing some store of them with our fowling- 
pieces ; without which, having little or no bread, and less 
drink, but only the thick and troubled water of the river, 
we had been in a very hard case. 

Our old pilot of the Ciawani, whom, as I said before, we 
took to redeem Ferdinando, told us, that if we would 
enter a branch of a river on the right hand with our barge 
and wherries, and leave the galley at anchor the while in the 
great river, he would bring us to a town of the Arwacas, 
where we should find store of bread, hens, fish, and of the 
country wine; and persuaded us, that departing from the 
galley at noon we might return yere night. I was very glad 
to hear this speech, and presently took my barge, Λvith eight 
musketeers, Captain Gilford's Avherry, with himself and four 
musketeers, and Captain Caulfield Avith his wherry, and as 
many; and so Ave entered the mouth of this river; and be- 
cause we were persuaded that it was so near, we took no 
victual with us at all. When we had rowed three hours, 
we marvelled we saw no sign of any dwelling, and asked 
the pilot where the town was; he told us, a little further. 
After three hours more, the sun being almost set, we 
began to suspect that he led us that way to betray us; 
for he confessed that those Spaniards which fled from 

sepale blue. 


Trinidad, and also those that remained with Carapana in 
Emeria, were joined together in some village upon that 
river. But when it grew towards night, and we demanded 
where the place was, he told us but four reaches more. 
When we had rowed four and four, we saw no sign; and 
our poor watermen, eA^en heart-broken and tired, were 
ready to give up the ghost; for we had now come from 
the galley near forty miles. 

At the last we determined to hang the pilot; and if we 
had well known the way back again by night, he had 
surely gone. But our own necessities pleaded sufificiently 
for his safety; for it was as dark as pitch, and the river 
began so to narrow itself, and the trees to hang over 
from side to side, as we were driA^en with arming swords 
to cut a passage thorough those branches that covered 
the water. We were very desirous to find this town hop- 
ing of a feast, because we made but a short breakfast aboard 
the galley in the morning, and it was now eight o'clock 
at night, and our stomachs began to gnaw apace; but 
whether it was best to return or go on, we began to doubt, 
suspecting treason in the pilot more and more; but the 
poor old Indian ever assured us that it was but a little 
further, but this one turning and that turning; and at the 
last about one o'clock after midnight we saw a light, and 
rowing towards it we heard the dogs of the village. When 
we landed we found few people; for the lord of that place 
was gone with divers canoas above 400 miles off, upon 
a journey towards the head of Orenoque, to trade for gold, 
and to buy women of the Cannibals, who afterwards unfor- 
tunately passed by us as we rode at an anchor in the port 
of Μ ore quit in the dark of the night, and yet came so 
near us as his canoas grated against our barges ; he left 
one of his company at the port of Morequito, by whom we 
understood that he had brought thirty young women, divers 
plates of gold, and had great store of fine pieces of cotton 
cloth, and cotton beds. In his house we had good store 
of bread, fish, hens, and Indian drink, and so rested that 
night; and in the morning, after we had traded with such 
of his people as came down, we returned towards our galley, 
and brought with us some quantity of bread, fish, and hens. 


On both sides of this river we passed the most beautiful 
country that ever mine eyes beheld; and whereas all that 
we had seen before was nothing but woods, prickles, 
bushes, and thorns, here we beheld plains of twenty miles 
in length, the grass short and green, and in divers parts 
groves of trees by themselves, as if they had been by all 
the art and labour in the world so made of purpose; and 
still as we rowed, the deer came down feeding by the 
water's side as if they had been used to a keeper's call. 
Upon this river there were great store of fowl, and of 
many sorts; we saw in it divers sorts of strange fishes, 
and of marvellous bigness; but for lagartos^'' it exceeded, 
for there were thousands of those ugly serpents; and the 
people call it, for the abundance of them, the River of 
Lagartos, in their language. I had a negro, a very proper 
young fellow, who leaping out of the galley to swim in 
the mouth of this river, was in all our sights taken and 
devoured with one of those lagartos. In the meanwhile 
our companies in the galley thought we had been all lost, 
for we promised to return before night ; and sent the Lion's 
Whelp's ship's boat with Captain Whiddon to follow us up 
the river. But the next day, after we had rowed up and 
down some fourscore miles, we returned, and went on our 
way up the great river; and when we were even at the 
last cast for want of victuals, Captain Gifford being before 
the galley and the rest of the boats, seeking out some place 
to land upon the banks to make fire, espied four canoas 
coming down the river; and with no small joy caused 
his men to try the uttermost of their strengths, and after 
a while two of the four gave over and ran themselves 
ashore, every man betaking himself to the fastness of the 
woods. The two other lesser got away, while he landed 
to lay hold on these; and so turned into some by-creek, 
we knew not whither. Those canoas that were taken were 
loaden with bread, and were bound for Margarita in the 
West Indies, which those Indians, called Arwacas, proposed 
to carry thither for exchange ; but in the lesser there were 
three Spaniards, who having heard of the defeat of their 
Governor in Trinidad, and that we purposed to enter Guiana^ 

" Alligators and caymans. 


came away in those canoas; one of them was a cavalier ο , 
as the captain of the Arwacas after told us, another a 
soldier and the third a refiner. 

In the meantime, nothing on the earth could have been 
more welcome to us, next unto gold, than the great store 
of very excellent bread which we found in these canoas; 
for now our men cried. Let tis go on, we care not how 
far. After that Captain Gifford had brought the two canoas 
to the galley, I took my barge and went to the bank's side 
with a dozen shot, where the canoas first ran themselves 
ashore, and landed there, sending out Captain Gifford and 
Captain Thyn on one hand and Captain Caiilfield on the 
other, to follow those that were fled into the woods. And 
as I was creeping thorough the bushes, I saw an Indian 
basket hidden, which was the refiner's basket; for I found 
in it his quicksilver, saltpetre, and divers things for the 
trial of metals, and also the dust of such ore as he had 
refined; but in those canoas which escaped there was a 
good quantity of ore and gold. I then landed more men, 
and offered five hundred pound to what soldier soever 
could take one of those three Spaniards that we thought 
were landed. But our labours were in vain in that behalf, 
for they put themselves into one of the small canoas, and 
so, while the greater canoas were in taking, they escaped. 
But seeking after the Spaniards we found the Arzvacas 
hidden in the woods, which w^ere pilots for the Spaniards, 
and rowed their canoas. Of which I kept the chiefest 
for a pilot, and carried him with me to Guiana; by whom 
I understood where and in what countries the Spaniards 
had laboured for gold, though I made not the same known 
to all. For when the springs began to break, and the 
rivers to raise themselves so suddenly as by no means we 
could abide the digging of any mine, especially for that 
the richest are defended with rocks of hard stones, which 
we call the -white spar, and that it required both time, men, 
and instruments fit for such a work, I thought it best not 
to hover thereabouts, lest if the same had been perceived 
by the company, there would have been by this time many 
barks and ships set out, and perchance other nations would 
also have gotten of ours for pilots. So as both ourselves 


might have been prevented, and all our care taken for 
good usage of the people been utterly lost, by those that 
only respect present profit; and such violence or insolence 
offered as the nations which are borderers would have 
changed the desire of our love and defence into hatred and 
violence. And for any longer stay to have brought a more 
quantity, which I hear hath been often objected, whosoever 
had seen or proved the fury of that river after it began to 
arise, and had been a month and odd days, as we were, 
from hearing aught from our ships, leaving them meanly 
manned 400 miles off, would perchance have turned some- 
what sooner than we did, if all the mountains had been gold, 
or rich stones. And to say the truth, all the branches and 
small rivers which fell into Orenoqiie were raised with such 
speed, as if we waded them over the shoes in the morning 
outward, we were covered to the shoulders homeward the 
very same day; and to stay to dig our gold with our nails, 
had been opus laboris but not ingenii. Such a quantity as 
would have served our turns we could not have had, but a 
discovery of the mines to our infinite disadvantage we had 
made, and that could have been the best profit of farther 
search or stay; for those mines are not easily broken, nor 
opened in haste, and I could have returned a good quantity 
of gold ready cast if I had not shot at another mark than 
present profit. 

This Arwacan pilot, with the rest, feared that we would 
have eaten them, or otherwise have put them to some cruel 
death : for the Spaniards, to the end that none of the people 
in the passage towards Guiana, or in Guiana itself, might 
come to speech with us, persuaded all the nations that we 
were men-eaters and cannibals. But when the poor men 
and women had seen us, and that we gave them meat, and to 
every one something or other which was rare and strange 
to them, they began to conceive the deceit and purpose of 
the Spaniards, who indeed, as they confessed, took from 
them both their wives and daughters daily . . . But I pro- 
test before the Majesty of the living God, that I neither 
know nor believe, that any of our company, one or other, did 
offer insult to any of their women, and yet we saw many 
hundreds, and had many in our power, and of those very 


young and excellently favoured, which came among us with- 
out deceit, stark naked. Nothing got us more love amongst 
them than this usage; for I suffered not any man to take 
from any of the nations so much as a pina ^ or a potato root 
without giving them contentment, nor any man so much as 
to offer to touch any of their wives or daughters ; which 
course, so contrary to the Spaniards, who tyrannize over 
them in all things, drew them to admire her Majesty, whose 
commandment I told them it was, and also wonderfully to 
honour our nation. But I confess it was a very impatient 
work to keep the meaner sort from spoil and stealing when 
we came to their houses; which because in all I could not 
prevent, I caused my Indian interpreter at every place when 
we departed, to know of the loss or wrong done, and if aught 
were stolen or taken by violence, either the same was re- 
stored, and the party punished in their sight, or else was 
paid for to their uttermost demand. They also much won- 
dered at us, after they heard that we had slain the Spaniards 
at Trinidad, for they were before resolved that no nation 
of Christians durst abide their presence; and they wondered 
more when I had made them know of the great overthrow 
that her Majesty's army and fleet had given them of late 
years in their own countries. 

After we had taken in this supply of bread, with divers 
baskets of roots, which were excellent meat, I gave one of 
the canoas to the Arwacas, which belonged to the Spaniards 
that were escaped; and when I had dismissed all but the 
captain, who by the Spaniards was christened Martin, I sent 
back in the same canoa the old Ciawani, and Ferdinando, my 
first pilot, and gave them both such things as they desired, 
with sufficient victual to carry them back, and by them wrote 
a letter to the ships, which they promised to deliver, and 
performed it ; and then I went on, with my new hired pilot, 
Martin the Arwacan. But the next or second day after, we 
came aground again with our galley, and were like to cast 
her away, with all our victual and provision, and so lay on 
the sand one whole night, and were far more in despair at 
this time to free her than before, because we had no tide of 
flood to help us, and therefore feared that all our hopes 
^ Pine-apple (see p. 36s). 


would have ended in mishaps. But we fastened an anchor 
upon the land, and with main strength drew her off; and so 
the fifteenth day we discovered afar off the mountains of 
Guiana, to our great joy, and towards the evening had a 
slent ^ of a northerly wind that blew very strong, which 
brought us in sight of the great river Orenoque; out of 
which this river descended wherein we were. We descried 
afar off three other canoas as far as we could discern them, 
after whom we hastened with our barge and wherries, but 
two of them passed out of sight, and the third entered up the 
great river, on the right hand to the westward, and there 
stayed out of sight, thinking that we meant to take the way 
eastward towards the province of Carapana; for that way 
the Spaniards keep, not daring to go upwards to Guiana, 
the people in those parts being all their enemies, and those 
in the canoas thought us to have been those Spaniards that 
were fled from Trinidad, and escaped killing. And when 
we came so far down as the opening of that branch into 
which they slipped, being near them with our barge and 
wherries, we made after them, and yere they could land 
came within call, and by our interpreter told them what we 
were, wherewith they came back willingly aboard us; and 
of such fish and tortugas' *° eggs as they had gathered they 
gave us, and promised in the morning to bring the lord of 
that part with them, and to do us all other services they 
could. That night we came to an anchor at the parting of the 
three goodly rivers (the one was the river of Amana, by 
which we came from the north, and ran athwart towards 
the south, the other two were of Orenoque, which crossed 
from the west and ran to the sea towards the east) and 
landed upon a fair sand, where we found thousands of 
tortugas' eggs, which are very wholesome meat, and greatly 
restoring; so as our men were now well filled and highly 
contented both with the fare, and nearness of the land of 
Guiana, which appeared in sight. 

In the morning there came down, according to promise, 
the lord of that border, called Toparimaca, with some thirty 
or forty followers, and brought us divers sorts of fruits, and 
of his wine, bread, fish, and flesh, whom we also feasted as 

88 Push. « Turtles. 


we could; at least we drank good Spanish wine, whereof 
we had a small quantity in bottles, which above all things 
they love. I conferred with this Toparimaca of the next" 
way to Guiana, who conducted our galley and boats to his 
own port, and carried us from thence some mile and a-hal£ 
to his town; where some of our captains garoused" of his 
wine till they were reasonable pleasant, for it is very strong 
with pepper, and the juice of divers herbs and fruits digested 
and purged. They keep it in great earthen pots of ten or 
twelve gallons, very clean and sweet, and are themselves at 
their meetings and feasts the greatest carousers and drunk- 
ards of the world. When we came to his town we found two 
caciques, whereof one was a stranger that had been up the 
river in trade, and his boats, people, and wife encamped at 
the port where we anchored; and the other was of that 
country, a folloAver of Toparimaca. They lay each of them 
in a cotton hamaca, which we call Brasil beds, and two 
women attending them with six cups, and a little ladle to 
fill them out of an earthen pitcher of wine; and so they 
drank each of them three of those cups at a time one to tlie 
other, and in this sort they drink drunk at their feasts and 

That cacique that was a stranger had his wife staying at 
the port where we anchored, and in all my life I have seldom 
seen a better favoured woman. She was of good stature, 
with black eyes, fat of body, of an excellent countenance, 
her hair almost as long as herself, tied up again in pretty 
knots; and it seemed she stood not in that awe of her hus- 
band as the rest, for she spake and discoursed, and drank 
among the gentlemen and captains, and was very pleasant, 
knowing her own comeliness, and taking great pride therein. 
I have seen a lady in England so like to her, as but for the 
difference of colour, I would have sworn might have been 
the same. 

The seat of this town of Toparimaca was very pleasant, 
standing on a little hill, in an excellent prospect, with goodly 
gardens a mile compass round about it, and two very fair 
and large ponds of excellent fish adjoining. This town is 
railed Arowocai; the people are of the nation called Nepoios, 
*"■ Nearest. *^ Caroused. 


and are followers of Carapana. In that place I saw very 
aged people, that we might perceive all their sinews and 
veins without any flesh, and but even as a case covered only 
with skin. The lord of this place gave me an old man for 
pilot, who was of great experience and travel, and knew the 
river most perfectly both by day and night. And it shall be 
requisite for any man that passeth it to have such a pilot; 
for it is four, five, and six miles over in many places, and 
twenty miles in other places, with wonderful eddies and 
strong currents, many great islands, and divers shoals, and 
many dangerous rocks; and besides upon any increase of 
wind so great a billow, as we were sometimes in great peril 
of drowning in the galley, for the small boats durst not come 
from the shore but when it was very fair. 

The next day we hasted thence, and having an easterly 
wind to help us, we spared our arms from rowing; for after 
we entered Orenoque, the river lieth for the most part east 
and west, even from the sea unto Quito, in Peru. This river 
is navigable with barks little less than looo miles ; and from 
the place where we entered it may be sailed up in small pin- 
naces to many of the best parts of Niievo Reyno de Granada 
and of Popayan. And from no place may the cities of these 
parts of the Indies be so easily taken and invaded as from 
hence.*^ All that day we sailed up a branch of that river, 
having on the left hand a great island, which they call Assa- 
pana, which may contain some five-and-twenty miles in 
length, and six miles in breadth, the great body of the river 
running on the other side of this island. Beyond that middle 
branch there is also another island in the river, called Iwana, 
which is twice as big as the Isle of Wight; and beyond it, 
and between it and the main of Guiana, runneth a third 
branch of Orenoque, called Arraroopana. All three are 
goodly branches, and all navigable for great ships. I judge 
the river in this place to be at least thirty miles broad, 
reckoning the islands which divide the branches in it, for 
afterwards I sought also both the other branches. 

After we reached to the head of the island called Assapana, 
a little to the westward on the right hand there opened a 

^ Raleigh regarded the occupation of ' Guiana ' as a step towards the 
conquest of New Granada and Peru (see pp. 374-375.) 


river which came from the north, called Europa, and fell 
into the great river; and beyond it on the same side we an- 
chored for that night by another island, six miles long and 
two miles broad, which they call Ocaywita. From hence, in 
the morning, we landed two Guianians, which we found in 
the town of Toparimaca, that came with us ; who went to give 
notice of our coming to the lord of that country, called 
Putynia, a follower of Topiawari, chief lord of Aromaia, 
who succeeded Morequito, whom (as you have heard before) 
Berreo put to death. But his town being far within the 
land, he came not unto us that day ; so as we anchored again 
that night near the banks of another land, of bigness much 
like the other, which they call Putapayma, over against which 
island, on the main land, was a very high mountain called 
Oecope. We coveted to anchor rather by these islands in 
the river than by the main, because of the tortugas' eggs, 
which our people found on them in great abundance; and 
also because the ground served better for us to cast our nets 
for fish, the main banks being for the most part stony and 
high and the rocks of a blue, metalline colour, like unto the 
best steel ore, which I assuredly take it to be. Of the same 
blue stone are also divers great mountains which border this 
river in many places. 

The next morning, towards nine of the clock, we weighed 
anchor; and the breeze increasing, we sailed always west up 
the river, and, after a while, opening the land on the right 
side, the country appeared to be champaign and the banks 
shewed very perfect red. I therefore sent two of the little 
barges with Captain Gifford, and with him Captain Thyn, 
Captain Caulucld, my cousin Greenvile, my nephew John 
Gilbert, Captain Eynos, Master Edward Porter, and my 
cousin Butshead Gorges, with some few soldiers, to march 
over the banks of that red land and to discover what manner 
of country it was on the other side ; who at their return found 
it all a plain level as far as they went or could discern from 
the highest tree they could get upon. And my old pilot, a 
man of great travel, brother to the caciqtie Toparimaca, told 
me that those were called the plains of the Sayma, and that 
the same level reached to Cuniana and Caracas, in the West 
Indies, which are a hundred and twenty leagues to the north, 


and that there inhabited four principal nations. The first 
were the Sayma, the next Assawai, the third and greatest 
the Wikiri, by whom Pedro Hernandez de Serpa, before 
mentioned, was overthrown as he passed with 300 horse from 
Cumana towards Orenoque in his enterprise of Guiana. The 
fourth are called Aroras, and are as black as negroes, but 
have smooth hair; and these are very valiant, or rather 
desperate, people, and have the most strong poison on their 
arrows, and most dangerous, of all nations, of which I will 
speak somewhat, being a digression not unnecessary. 

There was nothing whereof I was more curious than to 
find out the true remedies of these poisoned arrov/s. For 
besides the mortality of the wound they make, the party shot 
endureth the most insufferable torment in the world, and 
abideth a most ugly and lamentable death, sometimes dying 
stark mad, sometimes their bowels breaking out of their 
bellies; which are presently discoloured as black as pitch, 
and so unsavory as no man can endure to cure or to attend 
them. And it is more strange to know that in all this time 
there was never Spaniard, either by gift or torment, that 
could attain to the true knowledge of the cure, although they 
have martyred and put to invented torture I know not how 
many of them. But everyone of these Indians know it not, 
no, not one among thousands, but their soothsayers and 
priests, who do conceal it, and only teach it but from the 
father to the son. 

Those medicines which are vulgar, and serve for the ordi- 
nary poison, are made of the juice of a root called tupara; 
the same also quencheth marvellously the heat of burning 
fevers, and healeth inward wounds and broken veins that 
bleed within the body. But I was more beholding to the 
Guianians than any other; for Antonio de Berreo told me 
that he could never attain to the knowledge thereof, and yet 
they taught me the best way of healing as well thereof as 
of all other poisons. Some of the Spaniards have been 
cured in ordinary wounds of the common poisoned arrows 
with the juice of garlic. But this is a general rule for all 
men that shall hereafter travel the Indies where poisoned 
arrows are used, that they must abstain from drink. For if 
they take any liquor into their body, as they shall be mar- 


vellously provoked thereunto by drought, I say, if they drink 
before the wound be dressed, or soon upon it, there is no 
way with them but present death. 

And so I will return again to our journey, which for this 
third day we finished, and cast anchor again near the con- 
tinent on the left hand between two mountains, the one 
called Aroami and the other Aio. I made no stay here but 
till midnight; for I feared hourly lest any rain should fall, 
and then it had been impossible to have gone any further 
up, notwithstanding that there is every day a very strong 
breeze and easterly wind. I deferred the search of the 
country on Guiana side till my return down the river. 

The next day we sailed by a great island in the middle 
of the river, called Manoripano; and, as we walked awhile 
on the island, while the galley got ahead of us, there came 
for us from the main a small canoa with seven or eight 
Guianians, to invite us to anchor at their port, but I deferred 
till my return. It was that cacique to whom those Nepoios 
went, which came with us from the town of Toparimaca. 
And so the fifth day we reached as high up as the province 
of Aromaia, the country of Moreqiiito, whom Berreo 
executed, and anchored to the west of an island called 
Murrecotima, ten miles long and five broad. And that 
night the cacique Aramiary, to whose town we made our 
long and hungry voyage out of the river of Amana, passed 
by us. 

The next day we arrived at the port of Morcquito, and an- 
chored there, sending away one of our pilots to seek the 
king of Aromaia, uncle to Morequito, slain by Berreo as 
aforesaid. The next day following, before noon, he came 
to us on foot from his house, which was fourteen English 
miles, himself being a hundred and ten years old, and re- 
turned on foot the same day; and with him many of the 
borderers, with many women and children, that came to 
wonder at our nation and to bring us down victual, which 
they did in great plenty, as venison, pork, hens, chickens, 
fowl, fish, with divers sorts of excellent fruits and roots, and 
great abundance of pinas, the princess of fruits that grow 
under the sun, especially those of Guiana. They brought us, 
also, store of bread and of their wine, and a sort of paraqiiitos 


no bigger than wrens, and of all other soris both small atic? 
great. One of them gave me a beast called by the Spaniards 
armadillo, which they call cassacant, which seemeth to be all 
barred over with small plates somewhat like to a rhinoceros, 
with a white horn growing in his hinder parts as big as a 
great hunting-horn, which they use to wind instead of a 
trumpet. Monardus** writeth that a little of the powder of 
that horn put into the ear cureth deafness. 

After this old king had rested awhile in a little tent that 
I caused to be set up, I began by my interpreter to discourse 
with him of the death of Morequito his predecessor, and 
afterward of the Spaniards; and yere I went any farther 
I made him know the cause of my coming thither, whose 
servant I was, and that the Queen's pleasure was I should 
undertake the voyage for their defence, and to deliver them 
from the tyranny of the Spaniards, dilating at large, as I 
had done before to those of Trinidad, her Majesty's great- 
ness, her justice, her charity to all oppressed nations, with 
as many of the rest of her beauties and virtues as either I 
could express or they conceive. All which being with great 
admiration attentively heard and marvellously admired, I 
began to sound the old man as touching Guiana and the 
state thereof, what sort of commonwealth it was, how 
governed, of what strength and policy, how far it extended, 
and what nations were friends or enemies adjoining, and 
finally of the distance, and way to enter the same. He told 
me that himself and his people, with all those down the 
river towards the sea, as far as Emeria, the province of 
Carapana, were of Guiana, but that they called themselves 
Orenoqueponi, and that all the nations between the river and 
those mountains in sight, called Wacarima, were of the same 
cast and appellation; and that on the other side of those 
mountains of Wacarima there was a large plain (which after 
I discovered in my return) called the valley of Amario- 
capana. In all that valley the people were also of the 
ancient Guianians. 

I asked what nations those were which inhabited on the 
further side of those mountains, beyond the valley of 
Amariocapana. He answered with a great sigh (as a man 
**Monardes, Historia Medicinal (1574; English Version, 1577). 


which had inward feeling of the loss of his country and 
liberty, especially for that his eldest son was slain in a battle 
on that side of the mountains, whom he most entirely loved) 
that he remembered in his father's lifetime, when he was 
very old and himself a young man, that there came down 
into that large valley of Guiana a nation from so far off as 
the sun slept (for such were his own words), with so great 
a multitude as they could not be numbered nor resisted, 
and that they wore large coats, and hats of crimson colour, 
which colour he expressed by shewing a piece of red wood 
wherewith my tent was supported, and that they were called 
Orejones and Epuremei; that those had slain and rooted 
out so many of the ancient people as there were leaves in 
the wood upon all the trees, and had now made themselves 
lords of all, even to that mountain foot called Curaa, saving 
only of two nations, the one called Iwarawaqueri and the 
other Cassipagotos ; and that in the last battle fought be- 
tween the Epuremei and the Iwarawaqueri his eldest son 
was chosen to carry to the aid of the Iwarawaqueri a great 
troop of the Orenoqueponi, and was there slain with all his 
people and friends, and that he had now remaining but 
one son ; and farther told me that those Epuremei had built 
a great town called Macureguarai at the said mountain foot, 
at the beginning of the great plains of Guiana, which have 
no end ; and that their houses have many rooms, one over 
the other, and that therein the great king of the Orejones 
and Epuremei kept three thousand men to defend the borders 
against them, and withal daily to invade and slay them; but 
that of late years, since the Christians offered to invade his 
territories and those frontiers, the)'• were all at peace, and 
traded one with another, saving only the Iwarawaqueri and 
those other nations upon the head of the river of Caroli 
called Cassipagotos, which we afterwards discovered, each 
one holding the Spaniard for a common enemy. 

After he had answered thus far, he desired leave to 
depart, saying that he had far to go, that he was old and 
weak, and was every day called for by death, Avhich was 
also his own phrase, I desired him to rest with us that 
night, but I could not entreat him ; but he told me that at my 
return from the country above he would again come to us. 


and in the meantime provide for us the best he could, of 
all that his country yielded. The same night he returned to 
Orocotona, his own town; so as he went that day eight- 
and-twenty miles, the weather being very hot, the country 
being situate between four and five degrees of the equi- 
noctial. This Topiawari is held for the proudest and wisest 
of all the Orcnoqueponi, and so he behaved himself towards 
me in all his answers, at my return, as I marvelled to find 
a man of that gravity and judgment and of so good discourse, 
that had no help of learning nor breed. 

The next morning we also left the port, and sailed west- 
ward up to the river, to view the famous river called 
Caroli, as well because it was marvellous of itself, as also 
for that I understood it led to the strongest nations of all 
the frontiers, that were enemies to the Epiiremei, which are 
subjects to Inga, emperor of Guiana and Manoa. And that 
night we anchored at another island called Caiama, of some 
five or six miles in length ; and the next day arrived at the 
mouth of Caroli. When we were short of it as low or 
further down as the port of Moreqiiito, we heard the great 
roar and fall of the river. But when we came to enter with 
our barge and wherries, thinking to have gone up some 
forty miles to the nations of the Cassipagotos, we were 
not able with a barge of eight oars to row one stone's 
cast in an hour; and yet the river is as broad as the 
Thames at Woolwich, and we tried both sides, and the 
middle, and every part of the river. So as we encamped 
upon the banks adjoining, and sent off our Orenoquepone 
which came with us from Morcquito to give knowledge to 
the nations upon the river of our being there, and that we 
desired to see the lords of Camiria, which dwelt within 
the province upon that river, making them know that we 
were enemies to the Spaniards; for it was on this river 
side that Moreqiiito slew the friar, and those nine Spaniards 
which came from Manoa, the city of Inga, and took from 
them 14,000 pesos of gold. So as the next day there came 
down a lord or cacique, called Wannretona, with many 
people with him, and brought all store of provisions to 
entertain us, as the rest had done. And as I had before 
made my coming known to Topiawari, so did I acquaint 


this cacique therewith, and how I was sent by her Majesty 
for the purpose aforesaid, and gathered also what I could 
of him touching the estate of Guiana. And I found that 
those also of Caroli were not only enemies to the Spaniards, 
but most of all to the Epicreinci, which abound in gold. 
And by this Wanuretona I had knowledge that on the 
head of this river were three mighty nations, which were 
seated on a great lake, from whence this river descended, 
and were called Cassipagotos, Eparegotos, and Arawa- 
gotos;^ and that all those either against the Spaniards or 
the Epiiremei would join with us, and that if we entered 
the land over the mountains of Curaa we should satisfy 
ourselves with gold and all other good things. He told us 
farther of a nation called Iwarawaqueri, before spoken of, 
that held daily war with the Epnremei that inhabited 
Maciiregnarai, the first civil town of Guiana, of the subjects 
of Inga, the emperor. 

Upon this river one Captain George, that I took with 
Berreo, told me that there was a great silver mine, and that 
it was near the banks of the said river. But by this time 
as well Orenoque, Caroli, as all the rest of the rivers were 
risen four or five feet in height, so as it was not possible 
by the strength of any men, or with any boat whatsoever, 
to row into the river against the stream. I therefore sent 
Captain Tlvn, Captain Greenvile, my nephew, John Gilbert, 
my cousin Butshead Gorges, Captain Clarke, and some 
thirty shot more to coast the river by land, and to go to a 
town some twenty miles over the valley called Amnatapoi; 
and they found guides there to go farther towards the 
mountain foot to another great town called Capiirepana, 
belonging to a cacique called Haharacoa, that was a nephew 
to old Topiazuari, king of Aromaia, our chief est friend, be- 
cause this town and province of Capurepana adjoined to 
Macureguarai, which was a frontier town of the empire. 
And the meanwhile myself with Captain Gifford, Captain 
Caul field, Edward Hancock, and some half-a-dozen shot 
marched overland to view the strange overfalls of the river 
of Caroli, which roared so far off; and also to see the 

*SThe Purigotos and Arinagotos are still settled on the upper tributaries 
of the Caroni river. No such lake as that mentioned is known to exist. 


plains adjoining, and the rest of the province of Canuri. 
I sent also Captain Whiddon, William Connock, and some 
eight shot with them, to see if they could find any mineral 
stone alongst the river's side. When we were come to the 
tops of the first hills of the plains adjoining to the river, 
we beheld that wonderful breach of waters which ran down 
Caroli; and might from that mountain see the river how 
it ran in three parts, above twenty miles off, and there ap- 
peared some ten or twelve overfalls in sight, every one as 
high over the other as a church tower, which fell with that 
fury, that the rebound of water made it seem as if it had 
been all covered over with a great shower of rain; and in 
some places we took it at the first for a smoke that had 
risen over some great town. For mine own part I was 
well persuaded from thence to have returned, being a very 
ill footman ; but the rest were all so desirous to go near the 
said strange thunder of waters, as they drew me on by little 
and little, till we came into the next valley, where we might 
better discern the same. I never saw a more beautiful 
country, nor more lively prospects; hills so raised here and 
there over the valleys; the river winding into divers 
branches; the plains adjoining without bush or stubble, all 
fair green grass; the ground of hard sand, easy to march 
on, either for horse or foot; the deer crossing in every path; 
the birds towards the evening singing on every tree with 
a thousand several tunes ; cranes and herons of white, 
crimson, and carnation, perching in the river's side; the air 
fresh with a gentle easterly wind; and every stone that we 
stooped to take up promised either gold or silver by his com- 
plexion. Your Lordship shall see of many sorts, and I hope 
some of them cannot be bettered under the sun ; and yet we 
had no means but with our daggers and fingers to tear them 
out here and there, the rocks being most hard of that 
mineral spar aforesaid, which is like a flint, and is altogether 
as hard or harder, and besides the veins lie a fathom or 
two deep in the rocks. But we M^anted all things requisite 
save only our desires and good will to have performed more 
if it had pleased God. To be short, when both our com- 
panies returned, each of them brought also several sorts 
of stones that appeared very fair, but were such as they 


found loose on the ground, and were for the most part but 
coloured, and had not any gold fixed in them. Yet such 
as had no judgment or experience kept all that glistered, 
and would not be persuaded but it was rich because of 
the lustre; and brought of those, and of marcasite withal, 
from Trinidad, and have delivered of those stones to be 
tried in many places, and have thereby bred an opinion 
that all the rest is of the same. Yet some of these stones 
I shewed afterward to a Spaniard of the Caracas, who told 
me that it was El madre del oro, that is, the mother of gold, 
and that the mine was farther in the ground. 

But it shall be found a weak policy in me, either to betray 
myself or my country with imaginations; neither am I 
so far in love with that lodging, watching, care, peril, 
diseases, ill savours, bad fare, and many other mischiefs 
that accompany these voyages, as to woo myself again 
into any of them, Avere I not assured that the sun cov- 
ereth not so much riches in any part of the earth. Cap- 
tain Whiddon, and our chirurgeon, Nicholas MillecJmmp, 
brought me a kind of stones like sapphires; what they may 
prove I know not. I shewed them to some of the Orenoque- 
poni, and they promised to bring me to a mountain that 
had of them very large pieces growing diamond-wise; 
whether it be crystal of the mountain, Bristol diamond, or 
sapphire, I do not yet know, but I hope the best ; sure I am 
that the place is as likely as those from whence all the rich 
stones are brought, and in the same height or very near. 

On the left hand of this river Caroli are seated those 
ns-tions which I called Iwarawaqueri before remembered, 
which are enemies to the Epnremei; and on the head of it, 
adjoining to the great lake Cassipa, are situated those other 
nations which also resist Inga, and the Epnremei, called 
Cassipagotos, Eparegotos, and Arawagotos. I farther under- 
stood that this lake of Cassipa is so large, as it is above 
one day's journey for one of their canoas, to cross, which 
may be some forty miles; and that thereinto fall divers 
rivers, and that great store of grains of gold are found in 
the summer time when the lake falleth by the banks, in 
those branches. 

There is also another goodly river beyond Caroli which 


is called Arui, which also runneth thorough the lake Cassipa, 
and falleth into Orenoque farther west, making all that land 
between Caroli and Arui an island; which is likewise a 
most beautiful country. Next unto And there are two 
rivers Atoica and Caura, and on that branch which is called 
Caura are a nation of people whose heads appear not above 
their shoulders; which though it may be thought a mere 
fable, yet for mine own part I am resolved it is true, 
because every child in the provinces of Aromaia and 
Canuri affirm the same. They are called Ewaipanonia; they 
are reported to have their eyes in their shoulders, and their 
mouths in the middle of their breasts, and that a long train 
of hair groweth backward between their shoulders. The 
son of Topiawari, which I brought with me into England, 
told me that they were the most mighty men of all the land, 
and use bows, arrows, and clubs thrice as big as any of Guiana, 
or of the Orenoqueponi; and that one of the Iwarawaqueri 
took a prisoner of them the year before our arrival there, 
and brought him into the borders of Aromaia, his father's 
country. And farther, when I seemed to doubt of it, he 
told me that it was no wonder among them; but that they 
were as great a nation and as common as any other in all 
the provinces, and had of late years slain many hundreds of 
his father's people, and of other nations their neighbours. 
But it was not my chance to hear of them till I was come 
away; and if I had but spoken one word of it while I was 
there I might have brought one of them with me to put 
the matter out of doubt. Such a nation was written of by 
Mandeville, whose reports were holden for fables many 
years; and yet since the East Indies were discovered, we 
find his relations true of such things as heretofore were 
held incredible.** Whether it be true or no, the matter is 
not great, neither can there be any profit in the imagina- 
tion; for mine own part I saw them not, but I am resolved 
that so many people did not all combine or forethink to 
make the report. 

When I came to Cumana in the West Indies afterwards 
by chance I spake with a Spaniard dwelling not far from 

** Mandeville, or the author who assumed this name, placed his headless 
men in the East Indian Archipelago. The fable is borrowed from older 
writers (Herodotus, iv. 191, &c.). 


thence, a man of great travel. And after he knew that I 
had been in Guiana, and so far directly west as Caroli, the 
first question he asked me was, whether I had seen any of the 
Ewaipanoma, which are those without heads. Who being es- 
teemed a most honest man of his word, and in all things else, 
told me that he had seen many of them; I may not name him, 
because it may be for his disadvantage, but he is well known 
to Monsieur Moucheron's son of London, and to Peter Moti- 
cheron, merchant, of the Flemish ship that was there in 
trade ; who also heard, what he avowed to be true, of those 

The fourth river to the west of Caroli is Casnero: which 
falleth into the Orenoqite on this side of Amapaia. And that 
river is greater than Danuhius, or any of Europe: it riseth 
on the south of Guiana from the mountains which divide 
Guiana from Amazons, and I think it to be navigable many 
hundred miles. But we had no time, means, nor season of 
the year, to search those rivers, for the causes aforesaid, 
the winter being come upon us; although the winter and 
summer as touching cold and heat differ not, neither do the 
trees ever sensibly lose their leaves, but have always fruit 
either ripe or green, and most of them both blossoms, leaves, 
ripe fruit, and green, at one time: but their winter only 
consisteth of terrible rains, and overflowing of the rivers, 
with many great storms and gusts, thunder and lightnings, 
of which we had our fill ere we returned. 

On the north side, the first river that falleth into the 
Orenoque is Cari. Beyond it, on the same side is the river 
of Limo. Between these two is a great nation of Cannibals, 
and their chief town beareth the name of the river, and is 
called Acamacari. At this town is a continual market of 
women for three or four hatchets apiece ; they are bought by 
the Arwacas, and by them sold into the West Indies. To 
the west of Limo is the river Pao, beyond it Caturi, beyond 
that Voari, and Capuri," which falleth out of the great river 
of Meta, by which Berreo descended from Nuevo Reyno de 
Granada. To the westward of Capuri is the province of 
Amapaia, where Berreo wintered and had so many of his 
people poisoned with the tawny water of the marshes of the 

^ The Apure river. 


Anehas. Above Amapaia, toward Nuevo Reyno, fall in Meto, 
Pato and Cassanar. To the west of those, towards the prov- 
inces of the Ashaguas and Catetios, are the rivers of Beta, 
Dawney, and Ubarro; and toward the frontier of Peru are 
the provinces of Thomebaniba, and Caxamalca. Adjoining 
to Quito in the north side of Peru are the rivers of Guiacar 
and Goauar; and on the other side of the said mountains the 
river of Papamene which descendeth into Maranon or Ama- 
zons, passing through the province Motilones, where Don 
Pedro de Orsua, who was slain by the traitor Aguirre be- 
fore rehearsed, built his brigandines, when he sought Guiana 
by the way of Amazons. 

Between Dawney and Beta lieth a famous island in Ore- 
noque (now called Baraquan, for above Meta it is not known 
by the name of Orenoqne) which is called Athulef^ beyond 
which ships of burden cannot pass by reason of a most 
forcible overfall, and current of water; but in the eddy all 
smaller vessels may be drawn even to Peru itself. But to 
speak of more of these rivers without the description were 
but tedious, and therefore I will leave the rest to the de- 
scription. This river of Orenoqne is navigable for ships 
little less than ΐ,οοο miles, and for lesser vessels near 2,000. 
By it, as aforesaid, Peru, Nuevo Reyno and Popayan may be 
invaded: it also leadeth to the great empire of Inga, and to 
the provinces of Amapaia and Anehas, which abound in 
gold. His branches of Casnero, Manta, Caura descend from 
the middle land and valley which lieth between the easter 
province of Pern and Guiana ; and it falls into the sea be- 
tween Maranon and Trinidad in two degrees and a half. 
All of which your honours shall better perceive in the 
general description of Guiana, Peru, Nuevo Reyno, the king- 
dom of Popayan, and Rodas, with the province of Venezuela, 
to the bay of Uraba, behind Cartagena, westward, and to 
Amazons southward. While we lay at anchor on the coast 
of Canuri, and had taken knowledge of all the nations upon 
the head and branches of this river, and had found out so 
many several people, which were enemies to the Epuremei 
and the new conquerors, I thought it time lost to linger any 
longer in that place, especially for that the fury of Orenoque 

*8 Cataract of Ature. 


began daily to threaten us with dangers in our return. For 
no half day passed but the river began to rage and overflow 
yery fearfully, and the rains came down in terrible showers, 
and gusts in great abundance ; and withal our men began to 
cry out for want of shift, for no man had place to bestow 
any other apparel than that which he ware on his back, and 
that was throughly washed on his body for the most part 
ten times in one day; and we had now been well-near a 
month every day passing to the westward farther and farther 
from our ships. We therefore turned towards the east, and 
spent the rest of the time in discovering the river towards 
the sea, which we had not viewed, and which was most 

The next day following we left the mouth of Carol'i, and 
arrived again at the port of Moreqiiito where we were be- 
fore; for passing down the stream we went without labour, 
and against the wind, little less than a hundred miles a day. 
As soon as I came to anchor, I sent away one for old 
Topiawari, with whom I much desired to have further con- 
ference, and also to deal with him for some one of his 
country to bring with us into England, as well to learn the 
language, as to confer withal by the way, the time being 
now spent of any longer stay there. Within three hours 
after my messenger came to him, he arrived also, and with 
him such a rabble of all sorts of people, and every one loaden 
with somewhat, as if it had been a great market or fair in 
England; and our hungry companies clustered thick and 
threefold among their baskets, every one laying hand on 
what he liked. After he had rested awhile in my tent, I 
shut out all but ourselves and my interpreter, and told him 
that I knew that both the Epuremei and the Spaniards were 
enemies to him, his country and nations: that the one had 
conquered Guiana already, and the other sought to regain 
the same from them both; and therefore I desired him to 
instruct me what he could, both of the passage into the 
golden parts of Guiana, and to the civil towns and appar- 
elled people of Inga. He gave me an answer to this effect: 
first, that he could not perceive that I meant to go onward 
towards the city of Manoa, for neither the time of the year 
served, neither could he perceive any sufficient numbers for 


such an enterprise. And if I did, I was sure with all my 
company to be buried there, for the emperor was of that 
strength, as that many times so many men more were too 
few. Besides, he gave me this good counsel and advised 
me to hold it in mind (as for himself, he knew he could not 
live till my return), that I should not offer by any means 
hereafter to invade the strong parts of Guiana without the 
help of all those nations which were also their enemies; for 
that it was impossible without those, either to be conducted, 
to be victualled, or to have aught carried with us, our people 
not being able to endure the march in so great heat and 
travail, unless the borderers gave them help, to cart with 
them both their meat and furniture. For he remembered 
that in the plains of Macureguarai three hundred Spaniards 
were overthrown, who were tired out, and had none of the 
borderers to their friends; but meeting their enemies as they 
passed the frontier, were environed on all sides, and the 
people setting the long dry grass on fire, smothered them, 
so as they had no breath to fight, nor could discern their 
enemies for the great smoke. He told me further that four 
days' journey from his town was Macureguarai, and that 
those were the next and nearest of the subjects of Inga, and 
of the Epuremei, and the first town of apparelled and rich 
people ; and that all those plates of gold which were scattered 
among the borderers and carried to other nations far and 
near, came from the said Macureguarai and were there 
made, but that those of the land within were far finer, and 
were fashioned after the images of men, beasts, birds, and 
fishes. I asked him whether he thought that those com- 
panies that I had there with me were sufficient to take that 
town or no; he told me that he thought they were. I then 
asked him whether he would assist me with guides, and some 
companies of his people to join with us; he answered that 
he would go himself with all the borderers, if the rivers did 
remain fordable, upon this condition, that I would leave with 
him till my return again fifty soldiers, which he undertook 
to victual. I answered that I had not above fifty good men 
in all there; the rest were labourers and rowers, and that I 
had no provision to leave with them of powder, shot, ap- 
parel, or aught else, and that without those things necessary 


for their defence, they should be in danger of the Spaniards 
in my absence, who I knew would use the same measures 
towards mine that I offered them at Trinidad. And al- 
though upon the motion Captain Catdfield, Captain Green- 
vile, my nephew John Gilbert and divers others were de- 
sirous to stay, yet I was resolved that they must needs have 
perished. For Berreo expected daily a supply out of Spain, 
and looked also hourly for his son to come down from Nuevo 
Reyno de Granada, with many horse and foot, and had also 
in Valencia, in the Caracas, two hundred horse ready to 
march; and I could not have spared above forty, and had 
not any store at all of powder, lead, or match to have left 
with them, nor any other provision, either spade, pickaxe, or 
aught else to have fortified withal. 

When I had given him reason that I could not at this time 
leave him such a company, he then desired me to forbear 
him and his country for that time ; for he assured me that 
I should be no sooner three days from the coast but those 
Epuremei would invade him, and destroy all the remain of 
his people and friends, if he should any way either guide 
us or assist us against them. He further alleged that the 
Spaniards sought his death; and as they had already mur- 
dered his nephew Morequito, lord of that province, so they 
had him seventeen days in a chain before he was king of 
the country, and led him like a dog from place to place until 
he had paid an hundred plates of gold and divers chains of 
spleen-stones for his ransom.^* And now, since he became 
owner of that province, that they had many times laid wait 
to take him, and that they would be now more vehement 
when they should understand of his conference with the 
English. And because, said he, they would the better dis- 
plant me, if they cannot lay hands on me, they have gotten 
a nephew of mine called Eparacano, whom they have chris- 
tened Don Juan, and his son Don Pedro, whom they have 
also apparelled and armed, by whom they seek to make a 
party against me in mine own cotmtry. He also hath takeff. 
to wife one Louiana, of a strong family, which are borderers 
and neighbours ; and myself now being old and in the hands 
of death am, not able to travel nor to shift as when I was of 

** See page 344. 


younger years. He therefore prayed us to defer it till the 
next year, when he would undertake to draw in all the 
borderers to serve us, and then, also, it would be more 
seasonable to travel; for at this time of the year we should 
not be able to pass any river, the waters were and would be 
so grown ere our return. 

He farther told me that I could not desire so much to 
invade Macureguarai and the rest of Gtiiana but that the 
borderers would be more vehement than I. For he yielded 
for a chief cause that in the wars with the Epuremei they 
were spoiled of their women, and that their wives and 
daughters were taken from them; so as for their own parts 
they desired nothing of the gold or treasure for their labours, 
but only to recover women from the Epuremei. For he 
farther complained very sadly, as it had been a matter of 
great consequence, that whereas they were wont to have ten 
or tweh^e wives, they were now enforced to content them- 
selves with three or four, and that the lords of the Epiiremei 
had fifty or a hundred. And in truth they war more for 
women than either for gold or dominion. For the lords of 
countries desire many children of their own bodies to in- 
crease their races and kindreds, for in those consist their 
greatest trust and strength. Divers of his followers after- 
wards desired me to make haste again, that they might sack 
the Epuremei, and I asked them, of what? They answered. 
Of their women for us, and their gold for you. For the 
hope of those many of women they more desire the war than 
either for gold or for the recovery of their ancient terri- 
tories. For what between the subjects of Inga and the 
Spaniards, those frontiers are grown thin of people ; and 
also great numbers are fled to other nations farther off for 
fear of the Spaniards. 

After I received this answer of the old man, we fell into 
consideration whether it had been of better advice to have 
entered Macureguarai, and to have begun a war upon Inga 
at this time, yea, or no, if the time of the year and all things 
else had sorted. For mine own part, as we were not able to 
march it for the rivers, neither had any such strength as was 
requisite, and durst not abide the coming of the winter, or 
to tarry any longer from our ships, I thought it were evil 


counsel to have attempted it at that time, although the desire 
for gold will answer many objections. But it would have 
been, in mine opinion, an utter overthrow to the enterprise, 
if the same should be hereafter by her Majesty attempted. 
For then, whereas now they have heard we were enemies to 
the Spaniards and were sent by her Majesty to relieve them, 
they would as good cheap have joined with the Spaniards at 
our return, as to have yielded unto us, when they had proved 
that we came both for one errand, and that both sought but 
to sack and spoil them. But as yet our desire of gold, or 
our purpose of invasion, is not known to them of the empire. 
And it is likely that if her Majesty undertake the enterprise 
they will rather submit themselves to her obedience than to 
the Spaniards, of whose cruelty both themselves and the bor- 
derers have already tasted. And therefore, till I had known 
her Majesty's pleasure, I would rather have lost the sack 
of one or two towns, although they might have been very 
profitable, than to have defaced or endangered the future 
hope of so many millions, and the great good and rich trade 
which England may be possessed of thereby. I am assured 
now that they will all die, even to the last man, against the 
Spaniards in hope of our succour and return. Whereas, 
otherwise, if I had either laid hands on the borderers or 
ransomed the lords, as Berreo did, or invaded the subjects 
of Inga, I know all had been lost for hereafter. 

After that I had resolved Topiawari, lord of Aromaia, that 
I could not at this time leave with him the companies he de- 
sired, and that I was contented to forbear the enterprise 
against the Epuremei till the next year, he freely gave me 
his only son to take with me into England; and hoped that 
though he himself had but a short time to live, yet that by 
our means his son should be established after his death. 
And I left with him one Francis Sparrow, a servant of Cap- 
tain Gifford, who was desirous to tarry, and could describe 
a country with his pen, and a boy of mine called Hugh 
Goodwin, to learn the language. I after asked the manner 
how the Epuremei wrought those plates of gold, and how 
they could melt it out of the stone. He told me that the 
most of the gold which they made in plates and images was 
not severed from the stone, but that on the lake of Manoa, 


and in a multitude of other rivers, they gathered it in grains 
of perfect gold and in pieces as big as small stones, and 
they put it to a part of copper, otherwise they could not 
work it; and that they used a great earthen pot with holes 
round about it, and when they had mingled the gold and 
copper together they fastened canes to the holes, and so 
with the breath of men they increased the fire till the metal 
ran, and then they cast it into moulds of stone and clay, and 
so make those plates and images. I have sent your honours 
of two sorts such as I could by chance recover, more to 
shew the manner of them than for the value. For I did 
not in any sort make my desire of gold known, because I 
had neither time nor power to have a great quantity. I 
gave among them many more pieces of gold than I re- 
ceived, of the new money of twenty shillings with her 
Majesty's picture, to wear, with promise that they would 
become her servants thenceforth. 

I have also sent your honours of the ore, whereof I know 
some is as rich as the earth yieldeth any, of which I know 
there is sufficient, if nothing else were to be hoped for. 
But besides that we were not able to tarry and search the 
hills, so we had neither pioneers, bars, sledges, nor wedges 
of iron to break the ground, without which there is no work- 
ing in mines. But we saw all the hills with stones of the 
colour of gold and silver, and we tried them to be no 
marcasite, and therefore such as the Spaniards call El madre 
del oro or ' the mother of gold,' which is an undoubted assur- 
ance of the general abundance ; and myself saw the outside 
of many mines of the spar, which I know to be the same 
that all covet in this world, and of those more than I will 
speak of. 

Having learned \vhat I could in Canuri and Aromaia, 
and received a faithful promise of the principallest of those 
provinces to become servants to her Majesty, and to resist 
the Spaniards if they made any attempt in our absence, 
and that they would draw in the nations about the lake of 
Cassipa and those of Iwarawaqueri, I then parted from old 
Topiawari, and received his son for a pledge between us, 
and left with him two of ours as aforesaid. To Francis 
Sparrow I gave instructions to travel to Macureguarai with 


such merchandises as I left with them, thereby to learn the 
place, and if it were' possible, to go on to the great city of 
Manoa. Which being done, we weighed anchor and coasted 
the river on Guiana side, because we came upon the north 
side, by the lawns of the Sainia and Wikiri. 

There came with us from Aromaia a cacique called 
Putijma, that commanded the province of Warapana, which 
Putijma slew the nine Spaniards upon Caroli before spoken 
of; who desired us to rest in the port of his country^ promis- 
ing to bring us unto a mountain adjoining to his town that 
had stones of the colour of gold, which he performed. And 
after we had rested there one night I went myself in the 
morning with most of the gentlemen of my company over- 
land towards the said mountain, marching by a river's side 
called Mana, leaving on the right hand a town called Tute- 
ritona, standing in the province of Tarracoa, of which 
Wariaaremagoto is principal. Beyond it lieth another town 
towards the south, in the valley of Amariocapana, which 
beareth the name of the said valley; whose plains stretch 
themselves some sixty miles in length, east and west, as fair 
ground and as beautiful fields as any man hath ever seen, 
with divers copses scattered here and there by the river's 
side, and all as full of deer as any forest or park in England, 
and in every lake and river the like abundance of fish and 
fowl ; of which Irraparragota is lord. 

From the river of Mana we crossed another river in the 
said beautiful valley called Oiana, and rested ourselves by 
a clear lake which lay in the middle of the said Oiana; and 
one of our guides kindling us fire with two sticks, we stayed 
awhile to dry our shirts, which with the heat hung very Λvet 
and heavy on our shoulders. Afterwards we sought the 
ford to pass over towards the mountain called Iconiiri, where 
Putijma foretold us of the mine. In this lake we saw one 
of the great fishes, as big as a wine pipe, which they call 
manati, being most excellent and wholesome meat. But 
after I perceived that to pass the said river would require 
half-a-day's march more, I was not able myself to endure 
it, and therefore I sent Captain Keymis with six shot to go 
on, and gave him order not to return to the port of Putijma, 
which is called Chiparepare, but to take leisure, and to 


march down the said valley as far as a river called Cumaca, 
where I promised to meet him again, Putijma himself 
promising also to be his guide. And as they marched, they 
left the towns of Emperapana and Capurepana on the right 
hand, and marched from Putijma's house, down the said 
valley of Amariocapana; and we returning the same day to 
the river's side, saw by the way many rocks like unto gold 
ore, and on the left hand a round mountain which consisted 
of mineral stone. 

From hence we rowed down the stream, coasting the 
province of Parino. As for the branches of rivers which I 
overpass in this discourse, those shall be better expressed in 
the description, with the mountains of Aio, Ara, and the 
rest, which are situate in the provinces of Parino and Car- 
ricurrina. When we were come as far down as the land 
called Ariacoa, where Orenoque divideth itself into three 
great branches, each of them being most goodly rivers, I 
sent away Captain Henry Thyn, and Captain Greenvile with 
the galley, the nearest way, and took with me Captain 
Gifford, Captain Cmdfield, Edzuard Porter, and Captain 
Eynos with mine own barge and the two wherries, and 
went down that branch of Orenoque which is called Cara- 
roopana, which leadeth towards Emeria, the province of 
Carapana, and towards the east sea, as well to find out Cap- 
tain Keymis, whom I had sent overland, as also to acquaint 
myself with Carapana, who is one of the greatest of all the 
lords of the Orenoqueponi. And when I came to the river 
of Cumaca, to which Putijma promised to conduct Captain 
Keymis, I left Captain Eynos and Master Porter in the said 
river to expect his coming, and the rest of us rowed down 
the stream towards Emeria. 

In this branch called Cararoopana were also many goodly 
islands, some of six miles long, some of ten, and some of 
twenty. When it grew towards sunset, we entered a branch 
of a river that fell into Orenoque, called Winicapora; where 
I was informed of the mountain of crystal, to which in truth 
for the length of the way, and the evil season of the year, 
I was not able to march, nor abide any longer upon the 
journey. We saw it afar off; and it appeared like a white 
church-tower of an exceeding height. There falleth over it 


a mighty river which toucheth no part of the side of the 
mountain, but rusheth over the top of it, and falleth to the 
ground with so terrible a noise and clamour, as if a thousand 
great bells were knocked one against another. I think there 
is not in the world so strange an overfall, nor so wonderful 
to behold. Berreo told me that there were diamonds and 
other precious stones on it, and that they shined very far 
off; but what it hath I know not, neither durst he or any of 
his men ascend to the top of the said mountain, those people 
adjoining being his enemies, as they were, and the way to it 
so impassable. 

Upon this river of Winicapora we rested a while, and 
from thence marched into the country to a town called after 
the name of the river, whereof the captain was one Timit- 
wara, who also offered to conduct me to the top of the said 
mountain called Wacarima. But when we came in first to 
the house of the said Timitivara, being upon one of their 
said feast days, we found them all as drunk as beggars, and 
the pots walking from one to another without rest. We 
that were weary and hot with marching were glad of the 
plenty, though a small quantity satisfied us, their drink being 
very strong and heady, and so rested ourselves awhile. 
After we had fed, we drew ourselves back to our boats upon 
the river, and there came to us all the lords of the country, 
with all such kind of victual as the place yielded, and with 
their delicate wine of pinas, and with abundance of hens and 
other provisions, and of those stones which we call spleen- 
stones. We understood by these chieftains of Winicapora 
that their lord, Carapana, was departed from Emeria, which 
was now in sight, and that he was fled to Cairamo, adjoining 
to the mountains of Guiana, over the valley called Amario- 
capana, being persuaded by those ten Spaniards which lay 
at his house that we would destroy him and his country. 
But after these caciques of Winicapora and Saporatona his 
followers perceived our purpose, and saw that we came as 
enemies to the Spaniards only, and had not so much as 
harmed any of those nations, no, though we found them to 
be of the Spaniards' own servants, they assured us that 
Carapana would be as ready to serve us as any of the lords 
of the provinces which we had passed; and that he durst do 


no other till this day but entertain the Spaniards, his country 
lying so directly in their way, and next of all other to any 
entrance that should be made in Guiana on that side. And 
they further assured us, that it was not for fear of our 
coming that he was removed, but to be acquitted of the 
Spaniards or any other that should come hereafter. For 
the province of Cairoma is situate at the mountain foot, 
which divideth the plains of Guiana from the countries of 
the Orenoqiteponi; by means whereof if any should come 
in our absence into his towns, he would slip over the moun- 
tains into the plains of Guiana among the Epuremei, where 
the Spaniards durst not follow him without great force. 
But in mine opinion, or rather I assure myself, that Cara- 
pana being a notable wise and subtle fellow, a man of one 
hundred years of age and therefore of great experience, is 
removed to look on, and if he find that we return strong he 
will be ours; if not, he will excuse his departure to the 
Spaniards, and say it was for fear of our coming. 

We therefore thought it bootless to row so far down the 
stream, or to seek any farther of this old fox ; and therefore 
from the river of Waricapana, which lieth at the entrance 
of Emeria, we returned again, and left to the eastward those 
four rivers which fall from the mountains of Emeria into 
Orenoqne, which are Waracayari, Coirama, Akaniri, and 
Iparoma. Below those four are also these branches and 
mouths of Orenoqne, Λvhich fall into the east sea, Avhereof 
the first is Araturi, the next Amacura, the third Barima, 
the fourth Wana, the fifth Morooca, the sixth Paronia, the 
last Wijmi. Beyond them there fall out of the land between 
Orenoqne and Amazons fourteen rivers, which I forbear to 
name, inhabited by the Arwacas and Cannibals. 

It is ηοΛν time to return towards the north, and we found 
it a wearisome way back from the borders of Emeria, to 
recover up again to the head of the river Carerupana, by 
which we descended, and where we parted from the galley, 
which I directed to take the next way to the port of 
Toparimaca, by which we entered first. 

All the night it was stormy and dark, and full of thunder 
and great showers, so as we were driven to keep close by 
the banks in our small boats, being all heartily afraid both of 


the billow and terrible current of the river. By the next 
morning we recovered the mouth of the river of Cinnaca, 
where we left Captain Eynos and Edward Porter to attend 
the coming of Captain Keymis overland; but when we en- 
tered the same, they had heard no news of his arrival, which 
bred in us a great doubt what might become of him. I 
rowed up a league or two farther into the river, shooting 
off pieces all the way, that he might know of our being 
there; and the next morning we heard them answer us also 
with a piece. We took them aboard us, and took our leave 
of Putijma, their guide, who of all others most lamented our 
departure, and offered to send his son with us into England, 
if we could have stayed till he had sent back to his town. 
But our hearts were cold to behold the great rage and 
increase of Orenoque, and therefore [we] departed, and 
turned toward the west, till we had recovered the parting of 
the three branches aforesaid, that we might put down the 
stream after the galley. 

The next day we landed on the island of Assapano, which 
divideth the river from that branch by which we sent down 
to Emeria, and there feasted ourselves with that beast which 
is called armadillo, presented unto us before at Winicapora. 
And the day following, we recovered the galley at anchor 
at the port of Toparimaca, and the same evening departed 
with very foul weather, and terrible thunder and showers, 
for the winter was come on very far. The best was, we went 
no less than loo miles a day down the river; but by the way 
we entered it was impossible to return, for that the river 
of Amana, being in the bottom of the bay of Guanipa, can- 
not be sailed back by any means, both the breeze and current 
of the sea were so forcible. And therefore we followed a 
branch of Orenoque called Capuri, which entered into the 
sea eastward of our ships, to the end we might bear with 
them before the wind; and it was not without need, for we 
had by that way as much to cross of the main sea, after vre 
came to the river's mouth, as between Gravelin and Dover, 
in such boats as your honour hath heard. 

To speak of what passed homeward were tedious, either 
to describe or name any of the rivers, islands, or villages 
of the Tivitivas, which dwell on trees; we will leave all those 

HC — Vol. 33 (13) 


to the general map. And to be short, when we were arrived 
at the sea-side, then grew our greatest doubt, and the 
bitterest of all our journey forepassed; for I protest before 
God, that we were in a most desperate estate. For the same 
night which we anchored in the mouth of the river of 
Capuri, where it falleth into the sea, there arose a mighty 
storm, and the river's mouth was at least a league broad, 
so as we ran before night close under the land with our small 
boats, and brought the galley as near as we could. But she 
had as much ado to live as could be, and there wanted little 
of her sinking, and all those in her; for mine own part, I 
confess I was very doubtful which way to take, either to go 
over in the pestered'^" galley, there being but six foot water 
over the sands for two leagues together, and that also in the 
channel, and she drew five ; or to adventure in so great a bil- 
low, and in so doubtful weather, to cross the seas in my barge. 
The longer we tarried the worse it was, and therefore I took 
Captain Gifford, Captain Caulficld, and my cousin Greenvile 
into my barge ; and after it cleared up about midnight we put 
ourselves to God's keeping, and thrust out into the sea, leav- 
ing the galley at anchor, who durst not adventure but by 
daylight. And so, being all very sober and melancholy, 
one faintly cheering another to shew courage, it pleased 
God that the next day about nine o'clock, we descried the 
island of Trinidad; and steering for the nearest part of it, 
we kept the shore till we came to Curiapan, where we found 
our ships at anchor, than which there was never to us a more 
joyful sight. 

Now that it hath pleased God to send us safe to our ships, 
it is time to leave Guiana to the sun, whom they worship, 
and steer away towards the north. I will, therefore, in a few 
words finish the discovery thereof. Of the several nations 
which we found upon this discovery I will once again make 
repetition, and how they are affected. At our first entrance 
into Amana, which is one of the outlets of Orenoque, we 
left on the right hand of us in the bottom of the bay, lying 
directly against Trinidad, a nation of inhuman Cannibals, 
which inhabit the rivers of Giianipa and Berheese. In the 
same bay there is also a third river, which is called Areo, 

εο Crowded. 


which riseth on Paria side towards Cumana, and that river 
is inhabited with the Wikiri, whose chief town upon the 
said river is Sayma. In this bay there are no more rivers 
but these three before rehearsed and the four branches of 
Amana, all which in the winter thrust so great abundance of 
water into the sea, as the same is taken up fresh two or three 
leagues from the land. In the passages towards Guiana, 
that is, in all those lands which the eight branches of 
Orenoque fashion into islands, there are but one sort of 
people, called Tivitivas, but of two castes, as they term them, 
the one called Ciawani, the other Waraweeti, and those war 
one with another. 

On the hithermost part of Orenoque, as at Toparimaca 
and Winicapora, those are of a nation called Nepoios, and 
are the followers of Carapana, lord of Emeria. Between 
Winicapora and the port of Morequito, which standeth in 
Aromaia, and all those in the valley of Amariocapana are 
called Orenoqueponi, a.nd did obey Morequito and are now fol- 
lowers of Topiawari. Upon the river of Caroli are the Ca- 
nuri, which are governed by a woman who is inheritrix of 
that province ; who came far off to see our nation, and asked 
me divers questions of her Majesty, being much delighted 
with the discourse of her Majesty's greatness, and wonder- 
ing at such reports as we truly made of her Highness' many 
virtues. And upon the head of Caroli and on the lake of 
Cassipa are the three strong nations of the Cassipagotos. 
Right south into the land are the Capurepani and Empare- 
pani, and beyond those, adjoining to Macureguarai, the first 
city of Inga, are the Iwarawakeri. All these are professed 
enemies to the Spaniards, and to the rich Epuremei also. To 
the west of Caroli are divers nations of Cannibals and of 
those Ewaipanoma without heads. Directly west are the 
Amapaias and Anehas, which are also marvellous rich in 
gold. The rest -towards Peru we will omit. On the north of 
Orenoque, between it and the West Indies, are the Wikiri, 
Saymi, and the rest before spoken of, all mortal enemies to 
the Spaniards. On the south side of the main mouth of Ore- 
noque are the Arwacas ; and beyond them, the Cannibals; 
and to the south of them, the Amazons. 

To make mention of the several beasts, birds, fishes, fruits, 


flowers, gums, sweet woods, and of their several religions 
and customs, would for the first require as many volumes as 
those of Gesnerus, and for the next another bundle of De- 
cades. The religion of the Epuremei is the same which the 
Ingas, emperors of Peru, used, which may be read in Cieza 
and other Spanish stories; how they believe the immortality 
of the soul, Avorship the sun, and bury with them alive their 
best beloved wives and treasure, as they likewise do in Pegu 
in the East Indies, and other places. The Orenoqueponi bury 
not their wives with them, but their jewels, hoping to enjoy 
them again. The Arwacas dry the bones of their lords, and 
their wives and friends drink them in powder. In the graves 
of the Peruvians the Spaniards found their greatest abun- 
dance of treasure. The like, also, is to be found among 
these people in every province. They have all many wives, 
and the lords five-fold to the common sort. Their wives 
never eat with their husbands, nor among the men, but serve 
their husbands at meals and afterwards feed by them- 
selves. Those that are past their younger years make all 
their bread and drink, and work their cotton-beds, and 
do all else of service and labour; for the men do nothing 
but hunt, fish, play, and drink, when they are out of the 

I will enter no further into discourse of their manners, 
laws, and customs. And because I have not myself seen 
the cities of Inga I cannot avow on my credit what I have 
heard, although it be very likely that the emperor Inga hath 
built and erected as magnificent palaces in Guiana as his 
ancestors did in Peru; which were for their riches and rare- 
ness most marvellous, and exceeding all in Europe, and, I 
think, of the world, China excepted, which also the Spaniards, 
which I had, assured me to be true, as also the nations of 
the borderers, who, being but savages to those of the inland, 
do cause much treasure to be buried with them. For I was 
informed of one of the caciques of the valley of Amarioca- 
pana which had buried with him a little before our arrival 
a chair of gold most curiously wrought, which was made 
either in Macuregiiarai adjoining or in Manoa. But if we 
should have grieved them in their religion at the first, before 
they had been taught better, and have digged up their graves. 


we had lost them all. And therefore I held my first resolu- 
tion, that her Majesty should either accept or refuse the 
enterprise ere anything should be done that might in any 
sort hinder the same. And if Peru had so many heaps of 
gold, whereof those Ingas were princes, and that they de- 
lighted so much therein, no doubt but this which now liveth 
and reigneth in Manoa hath the same humour,^^ and, I am 
assured, hath more abundance of gold within his territory 
than all Peru and the West Indies. 

For the rest, which myself have seen, I will promise these 
things that follow, which I know to be true. Those that 
are desirous to discover and to see many nations may be 
satisfied within this river, which bringeth forth so many 
arms and branches leading to several countries and prov- 
inces, above 2,000 miles east and west and 800 miles south 
and north, and of these the most either rich in gold or in 
other merchandises. The common soldier shall here fight 
for gold, and pay himself, instead of pence, with plates of 
half-a-foot broad, whereas he breaketh his bones in other 
wars for provant^^ and penury. Those commanders and 
chieftains that shoot at honour and abundance shall find 
there more rich and beautiful cities, more temples adorned 
with golden images, more sepulchres filled with treasure, 
than either Cortes found in Mexico or Pizarro in Peru. And 
the shining glory of this conquest will eclipse all those so 
far-extended beams of the Spanish nation. There is no 
country which yieldeth more pleasure to the inhabitants, 
either for those common delights of hunting, hawking, fish- 
ing, fowling, and the rest, than Guiana doth; it hath so many 
plains, clear rivers, and abundance of pheasants, partridges, 
quails, rails, cranes, herons, and all other fowl; deer of all 
sorts, porks, hares, lions, tigers, leopards, and divers other 
sorts of beasts, either for chase or food. It hath a kind of 
beast called cama or anta^ as big as an English beef, and 
in great plenty. To speak of the several sorts of every kind 
I fear would be troublesome to the reader, and therefore I 
will omit them, and conclude that both for health, good air, 
pleasure, and riches, I am resolved it cannot be equalled by 
any region either in the east or west. Moreover the country 

"^ Hakiuyt reads ' honour.' ^^ Provender, food. " The tapir. 


is so healthful, as of an hundred persons and more, which 
lay without shift most sluttishly, and were every day almost 
melted with heat in rowing and marching, and suddenly wet 
again with great showers, and did eat of all sorts of corrupt 
fruits, and made meals of fresh fish without seasoning, of 
tortugas, of lagartos or crocodiles, and of all sorts good and 
bad, without either order or measure, and besides lodged in 
the open air every night, we lost not any one, nor had one 
ill-disposed to my knowledge; nor found any calentura or 
other of those pestilent diseases which dwell in all hot 
regions, and so near the equinoctial line. 

Where there is store of gold it is in effect needless to re- 
member other commodities for trade. But it hath, towards 
the south part of the river, great quantities of brazil-wood, 
and divers berries that dye a most perfect crimson and car- 
nation ; and for painting, all France, Italy, or the East Indies 
yield none such. For the more the skin is washed, the fairer 
the colour appeareth, and with which even those brown and 
tawny women spot themselves and colour their cheeks. All 
places yield abundance of cotton, of silk, of halsamum, and 
of those kinds most excellent and never known in Europe, 
of all sorts of gums, of Indian pepper; and what else the 
countries may afford within the land we know not, neither 
had we time to abide the trial and search. The soil besides 
is so excellent and so full of rivers, as it will carry sugar, 
ginger, and all those other commodities which the West 
Indies have. 

The navigation is short, for it may be sailed with an 
ordinary wind in six weeks, and in the like time back again ; 
and by the way neither lee-shore, enemies' coast, rocks, nor 
sands. All which in the voyages to the West Indies and all 
other places we are subject unto ; as the channel of Bahama, 
coming from the West Indies, cannot well be passed in the 
winter, and when it is at the best, it is a perilous and a fear- 
ful place ; the rest of the Indies for calms and diseases very 
troublesome, and the sea about the Bermudas a hellish sea 
for thunder, lightning, and storms. 

This very year (1595) there were seventeen sail of 
Spanish ships lost in the channel of Bahama, and the great 
Philip, like to have sunk at the Bermudas, Λvas put back to 


St. Juan de Puerto Rico; and so it falleth out in that navi- 
gation every year for the most part. Which in this voyage 
'cxt not to be feared; for the time of year to leave England 
15 best in July, and the summer in Guiana is in October, 
November, December, January, February, and March, and 
then the ships may depart thence in April, and so return 
again into England in June. So as they shall never be sub- 
ject to winter weather, either coming, going, or staying 
there : which, for my part, I take to be one of the greatest 
comforts and encouragements that can be thought on, having, 
as I have done, tasted in this voyage by the West Indies so 
many calms, so much heat, such outrageous gusts, such 
weather, and contrary winds. 

To conclude, Guiana is a country that hath yet her 
maidenhead, never sacked, turned, nor wrought; the face of 
the earth hath not been torn, nor the virtue and salt of the 
soil spent by manurance. The graves have not been opened 
for gold, the mines not broken with sledges, nor their images 
pulled down out of their temples. It hath never been entered 
by any army of strength, and never conquered or possessed 
by any Christian prince. It is besides so defensible, that if 
two forts be builded in one of the provinces which I have 
seen, the flood setteth in so near the bank, where the channel 
also lieth, that no ship can pass up but within a pike's length 
of the artillery, first of the one, and afterwards of the other. 
Which two forts will be a sufficient guard both to the empire 
of Inga, and to an hundred other several kingdoms, lying 
within the said river, even to the city of Quito in Peru. 

There is therefore great difference between the easiness 
of the conquest of Guiana, and the defence of it being con- 
quered, and the West or East Indies. Guiana hath but one 
entrance by the sea, if it hath that, for any vessels of burden. 
So as whosoever shall first possess it, it shall be found un- 
accessible for any enemy, except he come in wherries, barges, 
or canoas, or else in flat-bottomed boats; and if he do offer 
to enter it in that manner, the Avoods are so thick 200 miles 
together upon the rivers of such entrance, as a mouse cannot 
sit in a boat unhit from the bank. By land it is more im- 
possible to approach ; for it hath the strongest situation of 
any region under the sun, and it is so environed with im- 


passable mountains on every side, as it is impossible to vict- 
ual any company in the passage. Which hath been well 
proved by the Spanish nation, who since the conquest oi 
Perti have never left five years free from attempting this 
empire, or discovering some way into it ; and yet of three- 
and-twenty several gentlemen, knights, and noblemen, there 
was never any that knew which way to lead an army by 
land, or to conduct ships by sea, anything near the said 
country. Orellana, of whom the river of Amazons taketh 
name, was the first, and Don Antonio de Berreo, whom we 
displanted, the last: and I doubt much whether he himself 
or any of his yet know the best way into the said empire. 
It can therefore hardly be regained, if any strength be 
formerly set down, but in one or two places, and but two or 
three crumsters^ or galleys built and furnished upon the 
river within. The West Indies have many ports, watering 
places, and landings; and nearer than 300 miles to Guiana, 
no man can harbour a ship, except he know one only place, 
which is not learned in haste, and which I will undertake 
there is not any one of my companies that knoweth, whoso- 
ever hearkened most after it. 

Besides, by keeping one good fort, or building one town 
of strength, the whole empire is guarded ; and whatsoever 
companies shall be afterwards planted within the land, al- 
though in twenty several provinces, those shall be able all 
to reunite themselves upon any occasion either by the way 
of one river, or be able to march by land without either 
wood, bog, or mountain. Whereas in the West Indies there 
are few towns or provinces that can succour or relieve one 
the other by land or sea. By land the countries are either 
desert, mountainous, or strong enemies. By sea, if any man 
invade to the eastward, those to the west cannot in many 
months turn against the breeze and eastern wind. Besides, 
the Spaniards are therein so dispersed as they are nowhere 
strong, but in Nueva Espaha only ; the sharp mountains, the 
thorns, and poisoned prickles, the sandy and deep ways in 
the valleys, the smothering heat and air, and want of water 
in other places are their only and best defence; which, be- 
cause those nations that invade them are not victualled or 

** Dutch, Kromsteven or Kromster, a vessel with a bent prow. 


provided to stay, neither have any place to friend adjoining, 
do serve them instead of good arms and great multitudes. 

The West Indies were first offered her Majesty's grand- 
father by Columbus, a stranger, in whom there might be 
doubt of deceit; and besides it was then thought incredible 
that there were such and so many lands and regions never 
written of before. This Empire is made known to her 
Majesty by her own vassal, and by him that oweth to her 
more duty than an ordinary subject; so that it shall ill sort 
with the many graces and benefits which I have received to 
abuse her Highness, either with fables or imaginations. The 
country is already discovered, many nations won to her 
Majesty's love and obedience, and those Spaniards which 
have latest and longest laboured about the conquest, beaten 
out, discouraged, and disgraced, which among these nations 
were thought invincible. Her Majesty may in this enter- 
prise employ all those soldiers and gentlemen that are 
younger brethren, and all captains and chieftains that want 
employment, and the charge will be only the first setting 
out in victualling and arming them; for after the first or 
second year I doubt not but to see in London a Contracta- 
tion-House^^ of more receipt for Guiana than there is now 
in Seville for the West Indies. 

And I am resolved that if there were but a small army 
afoot in Guiana, marching towards Manoa, the chief city of 
Inga, he would yield to her Majesty by composition so many 
hundred thousand pounds yearly as should both defend all 
enemies abroad, and defray all expenses at home; and that he 
would besides pay a garrison of three or four thousand sol- 
diers very royally to defend him against other nations. For 
he cannot but know how his predecessors, yea, how his own 
great uncles, Guascar and Atahalipa, sons to Giiiana-Capac, 
emperor of Peril, were, while they contended for the empire, 
beaten out by the Spaniards, and that both of late years and 
ever since the said conquest, the Spaniards have sought the 
passages and entry of his country; and of their cruelties 
used to the borderers he cannot be ignorant. In which 
respects no doubt but he will be brought to tribute with great 

"The whole trade of Spanish America passed through the Casa de Con- 
tratacion at Seville. 


gladness ; if not, he hath neither shot nor iron weapon in all 
his empire, and therefore may easily be conquered. 

And I further remember that Berreo confessed to me and 
others, which I protest before the Majesty of God to be true, 
that there was found among the prophecies in Peru^ at such 
time as the empire was reduced to the Spanish obedience, in 
their chiefest temples, amongst divers others which fore- 
shadowed the loss of the said empire, that from Inglatierra 
those Ingas should be again in time to come restored, and 
delivered from the servitude of the said conquerors. And 
I hope, as we with these few hands have displanted the first 
garrison, and driven them out of the said country, so her 
Majesty will give order for the rest, and either defend it, 
and hold it as tributary, or conquer and keep it as empress 
of the same. For whatsoever prince shall possess it, shall be 
greatest; and if the king of Spain enjoy it, he will be- 
come unresistible. Her Majesty hereby shall confirm and 
strengthen the opinions of all nations as touching her great 
and princely actions. And where the south border of Guiana 
reacheth to the dominion and empire of the Amazons, those 
women shall hereby hear the name of a virgin, which is not 
only able to defend her own territories and her neighbours, 
but also to invade and conquer so great empires and so far 

To speak more at this time I fear would be but trouble- 
some : I trust in God, this being true, will suffice, and that he 
which is King of all Kings, and Lord of Lords, will put it 
into her heart which is Lady of Ladies to possess it. If not, 
I will judge those men worthy to be kings thereof, that by 
her grace and leave will undertake it of themselves.